– Sunanda Dey and Indrani Banerjee

Handed down through generations, Chanar Pithe has been a staple during Poush Sankranti celebrations in our family. It makes for a fantastic substitute for Gulab Jamun. Try and it out and you’ll know why.

Ingredients (for 40 pieces approximately):

For the patty (or base)

  • Chana dal (Bengal gram) – ½ kg
  • Refined flour – 300 gm
  • Refined oil for frying – 300 ml

For the filling:

  • Coconut – 2, dessicated
  • Sugar – 150 gm
  • Jaggery – 100 gm

For the sugar syrup:

  • Water – 1.5 litres
  • Sugar – 750 gm

Procedure for the patty (or the base):

Soak the Chana dal overnight. Boil the dal in a pressure cooker. Allow to stand for four whistles and remove it from the fire. Drain the water completely and allow the dal to cool down.


Mash the dal well to get smooth mixture. Add the flour and mix well with the dal mash.


Procedure for filling:

Dessicate the coconut as shown in the picture.


In one and a half a cups of water, add the jaggery and allow it to dissolve. Now add the sugar and allow it to dissolve and bring to a boil. Now add the dessicated coconut and keep stirring till the water evaporates and you get a nice sticky consistency. Remove from fire and allow it to cool.


Procedure for the syrup:

Add the sugar and water and keep stirring till the sugar melts.


Making the pithe:

Take a small quantity of the dough/base/dal-flour mash-up make a ball and then flatten it. Now put the coconut filling inside and wrap the patty around it.


Flatten it to make dumplings as shown in the image.


Now heat oil in a wok and add the dumplings and fry till they are golden brown.


Remove the pithe from fire and put them into the sugar syrup to make them soft and juicy.


Garnish with dessicated coconut. Yummy Chanar pithe is ready to eat.


This recipe was contributed by aunt, Sunanda Dey. A music exponent and an ex-school teacher, my aunt loves to cook and experiment with food that I get to eat almost everyday. Watch out for her recipes in my blog. 


Here’s another recipe: Alur Pithe

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