“Daab Chingri” or prawns cooked in a cocoanut shell, is considered unique and one of the most delectable dish among Indian Bengali dishes. You will be amused to know how this exotic dish is prepared by using only few ingredients. It is cooked inside the coconut shell and served straight out of the coconut shell. It looks as exotic as it tastes.
Traditionally, it is cooked with three ingredients, coconut, mustard paste salt and turmeric. Heard from my Grand ma that green coconut which was just in the beginning stage of ripening , has a thin layer of coconut. The shell top was cut opened and filled with the prawns and mustard, salt and turmeric. The top was sealed with any dough then the body is covered with wet clay which used to guard the coconut from burning in the oven. It was put inside the oven in low heat. The prawn used to cook inside with the coconut and when the clay showed cracks, it means cooking is done.
Now days we have Gas ovens, electric ovens which has made our life and cooking much easy. There are innovations in cooking style also. I am sharing 3 types of spices which could be used to make this recipe.
- Classic way using, black mustard paste, fresh coconut, green chili, turmeric, salt and mustard oil.
- Onion, garlic, coconut scrape, coconut milk, red chili powder, green chili,tomato paste, salt and sugar.
- Healthy way using, fresh coconut scrape, mustard paste, salt, sugar and little or no oil.
I have cooked it in classic way adding poppy seed paste and little bit of ghee.to mellow down the strong flavor of black mustard.
Let me share this amazing recipe of this exotic dish.
- Kochi Daab or green coconut having thin layer of coconut
- Medium sized Prawns – 300 gms. De shelled and De veined.
- Fresh coconut scrape (peel off the brown skin)- ½ cup
- Mustard seeds- 2 tblspn
- Poppy seed – 1 tblspn
- Mustard oil- 2tblspn
- Ghee/clarified butter- 1 tblspn
- Turmeric powder- 1 tspn
- Red chili powder-1 tspn(optional)
- Sugar- ½ tspn
- Green chili – 7-8
- Salt to taste
- Wheat flour dough- 1 small ball
Cut open the top of the coconut in square or in round shape. Save the cut out piece. It will be used as lid to close the open mouth of the coconut. Pour out the water and save little for using in cooking rest consume.
Now with the help of a long handled spoon try to scrape the inner layer of the coconut as much as possible.
Make a fine paste of mustard, poppy seeds, 4 green chilis, 1 tspn turmeric powder, sugar, 1 tspn salt. Use coconut water while grinding these spices. Salt and turmeric will save the mustard from becoming bitter.
Add the scrapped coconut to this paste and grind again to make as smooth as possible.
Take a bowl and add cleaned prawns and the mustard mix paste to it. Add mustard oil, ghee and slitted green chilis. Mix well.
Spoon this mixture inside the coconut. Tap the coconut in between so that the prawn mix is spread inside evenly with the coconut which has been scraped inside. You may use a spoon to stir the mix. Fill the coconut till ½” space is left..
Now put back the cut out of coconut and close the mouth.
Make a round disc with the wheat dough little bigger than the mouth of the coconut. Seal the moth with this dough tightly .
Pre heat the oven or the air fryer in 200 degrees . Bake it in 160 degrees in
Air fryer- 10 mins. Increase the heat to 200 degrees and cook for another 10 mins. I cooked it in Air fryer.
Oven: Intial in 160 degrees for 20 mins. Then another 10 mins in 180 degrees.
Indication : 1. The coconut will change its colour.
2. You may find some oil spilling from the edges of the sealed dough . This means the cooking is done.
Open the seal just before serving. You can keep the whole coconut on a serving tray and serve directly from it.
Enjoy the delicacy with hot steaming rice.
The coconut could be reheated in oven if required.
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