Friday, February 25, 2011

Mackerel Curry with Rice

Okay, this is not a traditional Bengali fish and rice combo, for neither is Mackerel a common fish in Bengal (quite a sizable chunk of people had a thing about sea fish), nor is this a recipe that you will find in gastronomic paeans. But the reason for including this one is because of the influence that the traditional 'bhat and macher jhol' recipes had on this dish.

It's easy to cook- right from preparation to serving takes about an hour and is light on the stomach. Maybe the best description for this would be 'comfort food for the restless Bengali soul far from home.'
For those of you who are curious but tentative about trying out complex fish curries, this one may be the right one to start off with.

Ingredients (Serves 2):
  • Mackerel-2 (Cleaned and cut into head, body and tail)~ About 300 gm each
  • Tomato-1 large
  • Onion- 1 large (finely sliced)
  • Ginger- 1 inch stick (chopped finely)
  • Garlic - 2 large cloves
  • Turmeric- 2 tsp
  • Chilli powder -1 tsp
  • Chilli flakes - 1/2 tsp (just for the smell, trust me it does not make it hot).
  • Salt- To taste
  • Mustard oil to cook - 4 tbsp
  • Bay leaf- 2 small


Clean fish in fresh water, drain, dress with turmeric, salt and leave aside for 15 mins. Chop onions, ginger, garlic. Quarter tomato and cut into halves. Heat 3 tbsp oil in pan till smoking. Fry fish till lightly browned. Remove from flame.

Pour remaining oil in pan. Add onions, garlic, ginger to oil- stir till soft. Add tomato pieces, bay leaf, chili flakes, chili powder. Stir on low flame.
Add fish to the mix. Add a little water. Simmer for 20 mins and your fish curry is down.

Serve hot with rice for lunch.

Estimated cost:
  • Fish~ OMR 1
  • Tomato+ Garlic+ Ginger+ Onion~OMR 0.100
  • Oil+ Spices~ OMR 0.200
  • Total cost~OMR 1.3 or USD 3.5 for two people
  • If you have the time and inclination, I would recommend pairing this off with a light 'aloo posto'.

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