Fish in Spicy Tomato Curry


 April,so many new, my home State goes into election, my little girl, who is no longer little, finished High School, winter is behind , spring bird song waking  me up the morning and the Assamese New year, 'Bihu' round the bend. Changes both tangible and intangible. In the midst of all this, my pottering with  pots,pans and ladle continues, there is no ebbing, my love affair with food is ongoing and relentless.

My mother would often complain about my restlessness as a child, my endless curiosity about everything,my urgency to travel, well, I continue my journey even now. So, when I'm not travelling on my feet, I travel with my taste buds.

I cooked this Fish Curry  South Indian style, which is  aromatic, spicy and very bold flavours. I love South Indian food.


500 gm fish,cut into fillets (I used Rohu fish but carp tastes excellent too)
1 tsp salt

1 tsp tumeric

For the Curry

2 medium sized onions

6/8 cloves of garlic

1 inch fresh ginger

4  cloves

4 cardamom

1 stick cinnamon

1 tbsp coriander seed

1/2 cumin seeds

1 tsp turmeric

2 large ripe tomatoes

1/2 tsp chilli powder

1  tsp salt

1 tsp jaggery

2 tbsp mustard oil/ cooking oil

8/10 fresh curry leaves

2 cups of water.


Wash and clean the pieces of fish. Marinate with salt and turmeric set aside.

Heat oil in a pan. Gently fry the fish,taking care so that they do not break. Fry for 2/3 mins no more.

Keep the fried fish aside.

Prepare the spices for the curry.
Dry roast the cumin and coriander seeds in a frying pan along with the cloves, cardamon, cinnamon  for a few minutes, stirring all the time. Roasting helps release its natural oil and makes it very aromatic.
Transfer all the spices into a blender, add the onions, garlic and ginger. Add a 2 tablespoon of water and blend into a smooth paste.

Add the tomatoes into the above mixture and blend again. 

Put the pan back on fire, the same pan where the fish was fried. In the same oil, splutter the mustard seeds and add the blended spice and onion, garlic ,ginger and tomato mix. 

Add the turmeric and the chilli powder, salt and jaggery. Cook for a few minutes, stirring all the while.

Lower the heat and cover the mixture and cook for another 5 minutes. Keep a check that it does not stick to the bottom of the pan. sprinkle a few drops of water and continue to stir,should it stick to the bottom. The masala is ready when it no longer smells raw and the oil floats on top.

Add 2 cups of water and the curry leaves   to the pan and stir , bring it to a boil and stir well. Once it comes to a boil, lower the flame and add the fried fish pieces.  Cover and simmer for another  7 /8 minutes.

I like the curry a little thick and not too watery, so that it lovingly coats each grain of the steamed rice that I serve with it.

Transfer to a serving plate and serve with steamed rice and lemon wedges.

Don't forget to share and comment your experience if you try this recipe.

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