Labra: The Only Dish Missing at Your Dinner Table
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During puja celebrations such as Durga Puja, Laxmi Puja, and Saraswati puja, the renowned Bengali dish labra is prepared and served as prasad. It is a thick and hearty vegetable hodgepodge that the Bengali people of all ages enjoy. People have adored this dish for ages because of their abiding love for it. This side dish recipe is produced using a spice blend known as panch phoran, which is accessible in shops. Nigella seeds, black mustard seeds, fennel seeds, golden fenugreek, and cumin seeds may be blended to make homemade panch phoran. It is usually served with bhoger khichuri, but steamed rice or roti can be eaten with it as well. This Bengali recipe does not include onions or garlic, so it is suitable for those who dislike those ingredients. All you need to do is combine the vegetables with the appropriate amount of spices, and the job is finished. You can substitute the vegetables in this recipe with your preferred vegetables. Pumpkins, brinjals, and potatoes, however, are essential for the authentic flavour. Watch your family and friends fall in love with your cooking as you prepare this dish for them.


    280 g potato

    240 g sweet potato

    280 g gathi kochu (taro corn)

    500 g brinjal

    220 g unripened banana

    240 g banana stem

    200 g cauliflower

    450 g cabbage

    150 g sheem (flat beans)

    120 g borboti (yard-long beans)

    700 g kumro (ripe pumpkin)

    350 g mustard oil

    6 pcs dried red chillies

    6 pcs bay leaves

    2 tsp panch phoron

    24 g green chillies

    70 g ginger paste

    150 g grated coconut

    6 g turmeric

    28 g salt

    56 g sugar

    40 g ghee

    20 g bhaja moshla


    Take care when chopping the vegetables to keep them all the same size so they cook evenly.. Since labra is often prepared on a big scale, it is traditional for all household members—men, women, and children—to participate.

    In a saucepan, bring water to a rolling boil. Add the borboti (yard-long bean) and cook for 2 minutes with the top off. They'll become a vivid green colour. Remove them from the water, then set them aside. The borboti can be blanched so that we can add them later in the cooking process to keep them juicy. They get shrivelled and dry when you fry them in hot oil.

    The gathi kochu (taro corm) should then be added to the same boiling water for 5 minutes and covered. This lessens their sliminess and helps to pre-cook them. Remove them from the water and set them aside.

    Warm up a sizable korai (or thick-bottomed wok). Completely pour in the mustard oil. Cook over high heat until it smokes and becomes light yellow. There is a lot of oil in it, so the colour change will take a while, and there will be a lot of smoke!

    Reduce the heat once it starts to smoke and add the brinjal. Fry for five minutes at medium-high heat until golden brown. Fish out the brinjal using a perforated spoon, then place it aside.

    Add the unripe banana now, and cook for a further five minutes, or until brown. Place aside.

    On low heat, stir the same oil for 30 seconds while adding dried red chillies and panch phoron. Keep the phoron from burning. It will go sour.

    Stir to cook the ginger paste for a minute after adding it.

    Fry the potato for 5 minutes before adding the thor (banana pith).

    Add the pumpkin and continue to cook.

    Cook for a minute after adding the green chilli paste.

    Next, add the cabbage, cauliflower, and sweet potato to the korai and thoroughly combine. Cook for 5 minutes with the lid on while gently stirring occasionally.

    Combine the sheem and the parboiled gathi kochu (flat beans). Cook for 5 minutes while stirring often.

    Stir in the grated coconut after adding it. For one minute, cook.

    Add the salt, sugar, and turmeric at this time. Be careful not to break the veggies at this point as you fully mix. Cook 10 minutes with the lid on. Every three minutes, stir.

    Add the borboti that has been blanched. Cook for 10 minutes while stirring often.

    Add the unripe banana, cooked brinjal, and entire green chillies that have been slit. For 10 minutes, cook. The veggies are quite tender at this point. So gently stir.

    After turning off the heat, add the freshly cooked bhaja moshla and all of the ghee. Before serving with khichuri, started bhaja, alu bhaja, kumro bhaja, chutney, and payesh, cover securely with a lid and let rest for 30 minutes.

Serve and enjoy this heartwarming dish. Bon appetite.