I visited a fish market today after 20 years. I remember I had gone to one when we used to stay in Lalbag. I might have been 4 yrs old. I have a very vague memory of the place. All I remember is the fish stink.
Anyway, I accompanied my father today to the fish market. I am sort of ashamed to say that I did behave like a 4 yr old kid. I was just curious to know what fish is called what and was really excited to have guessed a few of them right myself. We selected some fresh and local fishes called ‘Thapi’ and ‘Lepi’. Nobody might have heard about it but what the heck, I have never made fish curry in my life either.
I have had non-vegetarian food all my life but never felt like cooking it. I was a little scared and skeptical thinking what if I don’t clean it properly. As it is it was a living thing which is now dead.
So how did it go? Smooth. Cooking fish for the first time? Time for you to start.
This is what you need.
For the masala-
- 10-12 dried red chillies
- 1 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 1/2 cup grated fresh coconut
- Little tamarind, small blob
- 1 tsp chopped onion
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- Water as per requirement
- 1 chopped onion
- 3 tsp oil
- 4 fishes (cut and cleaned). I used this fish which is locally called ‘Thapi’. There should be another word for it.
- Salt to taste
How to make:
Once, you get the fish, rub salt and turmeric on it and put it in the deep freezer for sometime and start with the masala.
In a mixer container, put the chillies and grind it till it becomes fine powder. Add coriander seeds and grind. Add turmeric, grated coconut and tamarind and grind till all these ingredients mix well and become one. Now keep adding little water at a time and grind till it becomes fine paste. Then put the crushed garlic and 1 tsp chopped onion and grind just one round. Keep it aside.
Keep oil in a deep saucepan. Let it heat. Add onion and fry till it is brown in colour. Once, onion is fried, make the masala a little runny by adding water in the mixer container and pour it in the saucepan. Add more water and wash off all the masala from the container and pour in the pan for it to become a curry. Let it boil well. Add salt as per taste (I have added 2 tsps). Let it boil further.
Wash the fish at least 4-5 times till you feel it is clean enough. Check for black content inside the fishes. Clean it throughout. Add fishes one by one in the masala. Keep heat low. Put the lid on and leave it for 5 mins. Check if the fish is cooked. It doesn’t take so much time. The flesh should turn white when it cooks well.
Put the lid back on and put the flame off. Ready! Delicious fish curry. Serve with hot rice.