Sunday, October 31, 2010

Fish Curry and Fried Fish.

The perfect Sunday lunch: Granny's fish curry, fried fish and rice

After VC turned non-vegetarian again, it has been almost as if his sole preoccupation in life (aside from work, of course) is food. IE: what shall we eat next? Food/meals/cuisine/culinary choices and experiments have become his biggest preoccupation. I dont blame him though..after years of nothing paneer, mushrooms and baby corn, allowing himself meat again must feel like stepping into utopia.

So today, we decided to attempt the proverbial Fish Curry and Fried Fish combination at home. This was my first time buying fish, cutting cleaning and marinating fish, and cooking it all alone. VC helped, and I wouldnt have been able to do it otherwise. This was a joint effort in every sense.

I consulted my Granny for advice on what fish to buy, how much to buy and of course HOW to make it. I was astonished at how simple it sounded, and even turned out to be once i tried my hand at it! I bought a pair of white pomfrets, and we were set! At the risk of sounding immodest, I must say that the end result was pretty satisfactory for Fish Curry and Fried Fish virgins that we are!

Fried Fish

What you need (for about 6 pieces)
Freshly squeezed tamarind pulp
Red chilli powder
Garlic paste

Rice flour

What you need to do
Mix together the above ingredients and apply on the fish evenly. Let the fish sit in the marinade for atleast 2 hours.

When ready to fry, make a mixture of rice flour and rava. This powder, when coated on the fish gives it the crispiness you want. Dab the fish in the powder and coat it evenly on all sides. Shallow fry in a pan till golden brown and crisp!

Fish Curry

What you need (for about 6 pieces to serve 2 hungry people)
Juice of half a lime

3/4 cup coconut
1/2 a medium sized onion chopped
4-5 dry red chillies
Freshly squeezed tamarind pulp
2-3 pods of garlic
3 tbsp whole coriander seeds

2 slit green chillies
1 medium sized onion finely chopped
1/2 tsp finely chopped ginger

What you need to do
Marinate the fish in a mixture of the lemon juice, salt and turmeric and allow it to sit for a couple of hours.

In the meantime, grind together the fresh coconut, chopped onion, red chillies, tamarind, garlic and coriander seeds to make a fine paste. This is the masala that is the basis of the curry.

In a pan, heat some oil. Saute the finely chopped onion till almost brown. To this, add the freshly ground masala, some water and salt. Bring this to a boil on a medium flame stirring occasionally. Turn down the flame and throw in the slit green chillies and fresh ginger. Stir it in and let it simmer for a while.

Once the masalas are cooked and the heady fragrance of the masalas takes over your senses, drop the pieces of fish in. Gently, one at a time. Pomfret usually cooks quickly and didnt take u longer than 5 minutes. The fish should be incorporating the flavours by now.

And thats pretty much all there is to it!


This is best enjoyed with steamed rice, onion and tomato salad, with lots of lime. Big hugs and a giant thank you to my dearest Ammama for helping me out today. She wished me "best of luck" too :P and assured me that it was simple enough for a novice like me to get right even in the first attempt. And she was right. My fish curry and fried fish will probably never be as good as hers, but it was pretty darn tasty to spice up our Sunday afternoon. This ones easy-peasy and if youre a fan of coastal fish curry and fried fish, you have to give it a shot!

Chilli Chicken

Inspired, impromptu Chilli Chicken

I cant take credit for this one. I first saw this incredibly easy recipe on Finely Chopped's wonderful blog. And like I said to him, merely reading the post made me crave that Chilli Chicken. And it made me want to have it right then and there! So make it, we did!

What you need
Finely minced garlic
Sliced onions
Sliced capsicum
2-3 tablespoons of dark soy sauce
Green chillies slit

What you need to do
Heat 3-4 tablespoons of oil in a non stick pan. This is the kind of Chilli Chicken that will only taste nice if you are brave with the oil, forget about your heath for a bit and enjoy!

Add a tablespoon of finely chopped garlic and saute till slightly brown. Then, add two to three tablespoons of dark soy sauce. Add a teaspoon of green chilly sauce. Stir around until the soy sauce spreads across the pan and forms an oil slick like layer at the base.

Add sliced onion and capsicum. Stir till onion looks a bit pale. Chilli Chicken, for me, tastes best when the onions and capsicum is cooked, but still retains some of its crunch.

Throw in the chicken cut into two inch long pieces. Toss around with a ladle to ensure that the pieces cook evenly. Finely Chopped says it usually a maximum of about five minutes.

Add salt and a pinch of ajinomoto. Keep the flame high so that the chicken really absorbs the juices and flavours.

Add 5,6 slit green chillies.


Ps: this one made me wonder if its worth starting a Chilli Chicken cart somewhere around town.. :P

Thai Peanut Noodles

Yet another comeback!

Its like we're jinxed or something. Every time we decide to come back to this with all our enthusiasm and gusto, something invariably sweeps the wind right out of our sails. After the last post, which was shot using my dads camera, we promptly had to return the camera and go back to our former camera-less state. This time though, not for long. Last month, VC bought us a spanking new D5000. You can read about it here. And here.

The first thing we did of course was plan our next cook-in. So here it is:

Thai Peanut Noodles
This recipe was shared with me by Praeru, a dear friend who has been credited on this blog before (for sharing the recipe of the Oreo Cookie Brownies). Apart from sharing recipes and cooking tips, Praeru has always silently inspired me to get my hands dirty in the kitchen -- something that i was seriously averse to, thought it wasnt my scene, and never in my wildest dreams imagined I would one day cook!

What you need
1 packet hakka/egg noodles
1 cucumber
1 carrot
Bean sprouts (Optional. I couldnt find these, so I skipped it.)
1 onion
1/2 cup shelled peanuts
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup soya sauce
1/4 cup sugar (Preferably brown, but I had to make do with regular sugar.)
1-2 tbsp peanut butter (Optional, if you like.)
1" ginger
2-3 dried red chillies

What you need to do
Slice onions thin. Julienne carrots and cucumber into matchsticks.
Whisk the soya sauce, lemon juice and sugar. Add peanut butter at this stage, if using, and whisk together till sugar dissolves.

Crush peanuts, ginger and red chillies in a mortar pestle/chopper/mixie. The chunkier, the better.

Boil noodles in salted water and drain.

Mix with the sauce, chopped veggies (and beansprouts too) and peanut mixture.