I have been wanting to post this recipe of my favorite fish curry for a really long time. I generally prepare this curry during weekends and for us weekends are mostly lazed out and hence until now couldn't find time to click pics. Anyhow, today was the day when I finally found time to click some pics especially of the cooking procedure. Hubby had an off today and it was because of his help that I could capture some pics of the cooking procedure as well.
My mom prepares two types of fish curry at home, one with coconut and another without coconut. We always have this curry with steaming hot rice, tempered boiled tapioca and a side veggie. This Kerala fish curry with malabar tamarind or kudampuli as we call it in Malayalam gives it a very unique tangy flavor and the coconut gives it a rich super creamy texture. I once served this curry to a guest and he thought I had used yogurt in the curry because of its creamy texture. This is my hubs favorite and he always asks me to make this whenever we buy fish.
Now if you love coconut like I do I am sure you will love this recipe. I obviously learned this recipe from my mother. Although I never cooked it back home in India :P, it has now become a favorite must have weekend fish recipe for us here in US. So lets take a look at how this delicious dish is made :).
Serves: 2- 3 or maybe 2 if you love eating more than 1 piece of fish at a time...hehehe
For the Fish:
Fish of your choice have the scales removed, cleaned, washed and cut into pieces. I used 1 large golden pomfret for this recipe and cut it vertically. Made slits on the sides of the fish pieces so that the all the flavors of the spices can blend in with the fish.
I used 4 pieces for the curry and the rest I fried...yummmmm!!!
For the curry:
1/2 to 3/4 cup of freshly grated coconut
1 - 2 whole dry red chili (I used 1 whole dry kashmiri red chili for color and 1 regular dry red chili for spiciness)
1 tsp of kashmiri chili powder (if not using whole dry red kashmiri chili)
1 tbsp of coriander seeds
1 - 2 pearl onions
1/2 tsp of turmeric powder
1 - 2 kudampuli/malabar tamarind/garcinia cambogia
1/4 tsp powder of roasted fenugreek seeds
Water as needed
Salt to taste
1- 2 tsp of coconut oil
1 green chili (optional; add only if you want the curry to be more spicy)
4 - 5 curry leaves
1 inch of ginger julienned or finely chopped
1) Add all of the mentioned ingredients for the curry except the malabar tamarind and fenugreek seeds powder in a blender/mixer grinder bowl. Add enough water and grind to make a smooth paste. Keep this aside.
2) Wash the malabar tamarind/kudampuli and soak it in warm water. Keep this aside.
3) Heat a cooking vessel/kadai or if you have a cooking claypot then even more better (it enhances the taste of this dish). Once hot add the coconut oil.
4) To the hot coconut oil add the ginger and curry leaves, if using green chili add it at this time. Saute on a medium flame until the raw smell of ginger goes away.
5) Now add the prepared coconut paste, salt and add water as needed. I prefer my curry to be little on the thicker side so I added accordingly. Here add water as per your liking.
6) Cook the curry on a medium flame and once it starts boiling add the soaked tamarind. Boil the curry for 5 - 10 mins on a medium flame. After few mins you will notice the curry will be more deeper in color because of the tamarind. Check and adjust seasoning.
7) Now add the fish pieces into the curry. Stir and let it cook on a medium for another 10-12mins or until the fish is completely cooked. Finally add the roasted and powdered fenugreek seeds and stir. Let it cook for a min or two and switch of the flame.
And thats it....delicious Kerala Fish curry is ready to be served with hot steaming rice. :)