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What is a Choka?

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Potato Choka and Sada Roti

Potato Choka and Sada Roti

Photo by Cynthia Nelson

Choka refers to a method of preparing a dish. A choka is primarily made of a vegetable or fish that is dry cured, that has been roasted, preferably fire-roasted to give its unique smoky flavor. The vegetable or fish is then pureed or ground finely with aromatics such as onions, garlic, tamarind, hot pepper and cilantro.

Choka draws its origin from the Indian cuisine. In the Indian state of Bihar, Choka is a popular dish. Dishes such as Choka are truly representative of the multicultural cuisine of the Caribbean which has influences from Africa, India, China, Portugal, the Middle East, Dutch, French, Spanish, British and Indigenous.

The seasonings for Choka varies depending on the type of Choka being made. For example, cilantro is primarily used when making tomato Choka and it can also be added to potato Choka.

Types of Choka

There are mainly six types of Choka

  1. Potato Choka

  2. Coconut Choka

  3. Salt fish Choka

  4. Smoked Herring Choka

  5. Eggplant (baigan) Choka

  6. Tomato Choka

How to eat Choka

Chokas are generally eaten with roti. Some are eaten with rice and dal (a spiced lentil soup). Chokas can be served as breakfast, lunch or dinner items.

Breakfast Chokas

Though all Chokas can be served for any meal, the follow Chokas are the ones traditionally served at breakfast.

  • Tomato Choka

  • Eggplant Choka

  • Potato Choka

Suggested Reading
  1. About.com
  2. Food
  3. Latin Caribbean Food
  4. Caribbean Foodways and Culture
  5. Choka - What is Choka?

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