[Assam] Masor tenga Anja

Ram Sarangapani assamrs at gmail.com
Tue May 29 19:50:13 PDT 2007


C'da

Hehehe!

Itssssssssssss beeeeeen sooo long - I have forgotten the taste of roh mas.
The last time we were in Guwahati, we were told that there was a 'fish
scare' and too many chaloni-maas around - so we went for the chicken.

So, what is the equivalent of the roh maas here? The B'deshi out here, it
seems bring 'podor rhui maas' sometimes - haven't had the oppty or luck yet.

But did you like them recipies? :)

--Ram


On 5/29/07, Chan Mahanta <cmahanta at charter.net> wrote:
>
>  Ram, Ram, Ram. Tumi ki eibwr maasor xaanmiholi korila-he'?
>
>
> Catfish is the equivalent of maagur maas, but not really. It is more like
> 'aanri maas'. Tilapia is like a humongous 'bheseli maas' or a monster cousin
> of 'kaawoi maas'. Nothing like 'row maas'.
>
>
> c-da
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> At 7:53 PM -0600 5/29/07, Ram Sarangapani wrote:
>
> This past weekend, I had this "immediate must"  to have masor tenga anja
> (we were at the grocery store). She told me OK, go get the fish. The choice
> was between Tilapia or Catfish. So, I got a couple of pounds of Tilapia (on
> previous occassions, I always thought the catfish was always a better
> option). But the Tilapia was not a bad choice. I don't know the
> Assamese equivalent for Tilapia, but the catfish is the rohmas. I think the
> Tilapia is magur mas.
>
>
>
> As usual, I relish the dish. The downside is the tendency to overeat
> (several helpings). I came across this 5 course meal as described
> (beautifully) by someone. The tenga anja, we had, had some potatoes and the
> tenga is usually from tomatoes (I am guessing here) and not the lemon (as
> per the recipie here).
>
>
>
> Anycase - just wanted readers to think something pleasant :)
>
>
>
> --Ram
>
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>
> Tuesday, April 3, 2007
>
> *Grandma's Cooking*<http://www.scrumptulescence.com/2007/04/grandmas-cooking.html>
> **
>
> So, the day I left Assam, my grandmother asked me what I wanted for lunch.
> Since I like most everything, I hemmed and hawed, not wanting to make life
> hard for her, but eventually sacked up and requested the following Assamese
> feast. Unfortunately, I was to busy stuffing myself to take pictures, but
> here's an attempt at description:
>
> First course: Poita Bhat with Mitha Tel and Khorisa (Fermented rice with
> mustard oil and bamboo shoots).
> This is Assamese comfort food. You take some cooked parboiled rice, cover
> it with water, and soak it overnight in a cool, dark place. The fridge
> actually works fine. This ferments it, and gives it an interesting
> sweet/sour flavor. Drain it, and the mix it with mustard oil and salt, and
> bamboo shoots to taste. Mustard oil is incredibly pungent, and this is
> definitely not for everyone. Serve the mixture with a hot green chili and
> raw salt on the side. Bite into the chili, eat a little salt, and then eat a
> little of the rice mixture. It's a very loud, very ethnic party in your
> mouth.
>
>
> Second course: Masor Mur with Bengana (Fish head curry with baby
> eggplant).
> I actually have very little idea what spices went into this to make it so
> delicious. I know fish heads scare people, but they are delicious.
> Interesting texture, great flavor. I'm going to guess there was some
> onion/garlic (but just a little), salt, and sugar.
>
>
> Third course: Dayal Bhat and Xak Bhaji (Rice and lentils with a side of
> stir-fried greens).
> The X is Xak should be pronounced like an incredibly soft H. I have no
> good idea how to transliterate this, but this is relatively standard. Dayal
> = the Assamese word for Dal. This was a nice, simple Dal, just some onions,
> cumin, cilantro, and turmeric. No cream, no butter. Light, and very
> flavorful. I'll post an approximate recipe soon.
>
> The stir fried greens are of note because the incredible variety of greens
> that one can obtain in Assam is just fantastic, and all have subtly
> different flavors. By cooking them very lightly, you can really appreciate
> these differences. I know the Assamese name for many of them, but not the
> English. Some example of the English ones I do know: Mustard greens, radish
> greens, collard greens, bok choy (ok, not English, but god knows, familiar
> to this audience), clover (!). Though, to be fair, clover usually goes into
> soups.
>
>
> Fourth course: Masor Tenga (Lemon-tomato soup with fish).
> I could rhapsodize about Tenga Anja (literally, sour soup) for ever. It is
> the signature dish in Assamese cuisine, a delicately flavored broth with
> lemon, tomatoes, and cilantro, that comes in a thousand variations. It's
> also incredibly easy to make. I will post instructions soon.
>
>
> The beauty of it is that you can put almost anything in it. People put in
> potatoes to add body to the thin broth, or greens to add flavor. Squash or
> zucchini goes well to absorb flavor. Fried lentil dumplings are another
> traditional favorite (this variation is called bor diya tenga, bor =
> dumplings).
>
> But my absolute favorite is masor tenga (mas = fish). The heart of Assam
> is the Brahmaputra river, and the capital city, Guwahati, is right on the
> river. Thus, each morning, vendors come by house-to-house selling freshly
> caught river fish. This fish, cut into relatively small (2"x2") bone-in
> pieces, is lightly shallow-fried with salt and turmeric rubbed in before
> being immersed in the broth. The result is just incredible.
>
>
> Fifth course: Doyi Bhat with Gur and Kol (Yogurt rice with jaggery and
> banana).
> In both of the cultures that I come from (Tamil and Assamese), yogurt and
> rice is eaten at the end of each meal. However, in south India it's eaten
> with a salty and spicy pickle of some sort, while here, in Assam, it's eaten
> with gur (basically, brown sugar in big chunks) and bananas, almost as a
> proto-dessert. I like it both ways. And since I was in Assam, I followed the
> sage advice of Ron Burgundy: "When in Rome...".
>
> Posted by jsa at 6:24 AM<http://www.scrumptulescence.com/2007/04/grandmas-cooking.html>
>
>
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>
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