It is a popular Bengali village food. But if I would say it is just a village food then I will be wrong because urban living people also love this food a lot. But urban living people often do not know how to make this food or they are running out of time. So having this kocho shak in meal often becomes luxury to urban living people, haha. Secondly, village living people grow those plants and can harvest those leaves just before they want to cook. That means they can have fresh enough kochu shak (taro leaves) whenever they want.
But urban people are not that blessed. Fresh kochu leaves are not available whenever they want because they have to find it in the local market.
Kochu is called taro in English. It is also known as arbi in Hindi. But in Bengal, we know different types of kochu like ol kochu (elephant foot yam), maan kochu (arum), gaathi kochu (taro root), kharkol, dudh kochu (arum spinach), shola kochu etc. Stolons of shola kochu is also edible. I love taro stolon curry too.
In case, you are not living in West Bengal, Tripura or Bangladesh then you probably can find it in your local market. Taro roots are popular in many parts of the country. But when it comes to its stem, leaves, stolon then probably only Bengalis know how to make delicious kochur shak recipe (ranna).
There are several types of traditional taro leaves recipe. Many people enjoy this with Hilsha fish or any other fish head. Whereas many people enjoy this with small shrimps. Not only that many people love to keep it vegetarian dish. So they prefer to make kochu shak with brown chickpeas & grated coconut.
I love all types of traditional kochu shak ranna. But I tried taro (kochu) leaves mostly with fish head or chickpeas & grated coconuts. I have tried this with small shrimps hardly a few times.
Shola kochu shak recipe
- 500 gm kochu shak
- ½ cup brown chickpeas, chola
- ½ cup grated coconut
- 2 bay leaves/ tej patta
- ½ teaspoon nigella seeds/kalo jeera
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds/ jeera
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds/ sarso dana
- ½ teaspoon fennel/ saunf/mouri
- ½ teaspoon fenugreek/methi dana
- 1.5 teaspoon cumin powder
- 5 green chilies
- 1.5 teaspoons sugar
- 1.5 tablespoon vegetable oil
- Salt as needed
- Water as needed for boiling
- Cut kochu leaves & stem into small pices, wash it
- Boil kochu shak in water till it becomes soft, then drain water and keep boiled kochu in a bowl
- Now heat oil in cooking pot, add bay leaves and all other whole spices (panch foron - nigella, cumin, mustard, fennel & fenugreek seeds), then add grated coconut and saute for next one minutes
- Add boiled kochu, then brown chickpeas (soaked in water for overnight) too and mix it with all other spices and mash it
- Cook till becomes mashed properly then add sugar, salt and green chilies and cook for another 3-4 minutes
- Switch off fire and serve this with plain rice