Fish Curry

Fish is such an interesting food, so versatile and of course people either absolutely adore fish or abhore fish.. I belong to nowhere and my partiality depends on how well the fish is cooked. My cousin happens to be a wonderful cook when it comes to Fish and i will gobble up a couple of pieces if she has cooked it!

Unlike my Bengali and Malayali friends, i am not a born fish first tryst with fish i can remember is from the Dasara exhibition in Mysore where the fishery department used to have a stall. My father used to get me fried mackerels and feed me careful least i fiddle with the thorns. I also remember how my mother used to get repulsive at the very smell of fish being a pure vegetarian. My actual love affair started when my cousin settled in Kerala and learnt the prepare wonderful dishes that were not smelly but aromatic and lovely...

This curry that tastes better as it gets older. In fact this curry and the aroma of the curry reminds me of Andhra Bhavan in Delhi. As a student in delhi Andhra bhavan was the most inexpensive south Indian restuarant. Their fish curry was excellent, the curry so much better than the pieces of thorny fish.

Fish ( I used tilapia, least smelly therefore most convinient.) 1 Lb cut into pieces

sesame seeds 1 tablespoon

fenugreek seeds 1 teaspoon

Dry coconut 1 tabelspooon

chilly powder 1 tablespoon

dry chillies 3-4

Dhania powder 1/2 tablespoon

Garam masala 1 teaspoon

curry leaves 5-6



onion medium chopped

tamarind extract 1/2 tablespoon


Ginger garlic paste 1/5 tablespoons

cloves 4

cinnamon small piece

Corriander leaves


  • Clean fish pat it dry. (If using a robust fish like king fish, sword fish, the fish can be marinated in a paste of oil chilly powder, ginger garlic paste and salt.
  • Toast sesame seeds, fenugreek seeds and coconut one after the other and grind it into a smooth paste with little water along with cloves and cinnamon.
  • Heat oil in a pot. (earthern pots make very good fish curry but any non stick pot would do)
  • Combine mustard seeds, curry leaves and dry chillies. Drop the chopped onion, a pinch of salt and ginger garlic paste. saute till they are golden brown. 
  • Add the coconut paste and fry till aromatic. Mix the tamarind extract with 3 cups of water and mix it into the aromatic paste. 
  • When the mixture comes to a boil and oil starts floating on top, drop the fish pieces. Cover for 5-8 minutes. Sprinkles garam masala, corriander and salt. Do not stir the curry the fish will break. Shake the pot gently instead. Cook for a few more minutes and let the curry sit for at least for a couple of hours before serving.

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