Fish Fry: That’s so “MEEN”!!- RECIPE

Growing up in Delhi has its advantage and disadvantages as well! No, I do not ‘meen’ the traffic or pollution, a foodie like me only cares about the lack of diversity when it comes to food. Sure, we Delhites have given the world some of the best culinary delights, but when it comes to seafood, the disadvantages of living in a landlocked city are apparent.

In South Delhi, we have Chhittranjan Park which acts as my seafood haven, the place for getting best raw fish and prawns. But one cannot compare it to the fresh coastal food you get in Goa, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and other parts of the beautiful coastal India. We have to make do with whatever is available and it is mostly exorbitant! Sometimes I visit the Kerala Hotel in INA for their cheap crab curries, which are priced between 200-240 INR. But sadly, the crabs are not very meaty. Thus, seafood remains an expensive protein for us Delhites.

As seafood-deprived as I may sound, I do cook fish at home once in a while. My sister has made friends with this fishwala bhaiya in CR Park Market, who gives her fresh filleted Bhetki at a discount (And we are very loyal customers). She brings home fish almost once  in 7-10 days.

Our favourite is the Fish Fry, but my mother insists on making a curry alongside, since my father is not very fond of fried fish. Today Chator shares her recipe for Fish Fry which is  easy to cook and is the perfect comfort food after a long tiring day at work.

RECIPE (Prep time: 40 minutes; Cook time: 15 minutes)

SONY DSC
Fish Fry

Ingredients:

Bhetki Fish Fillets (You can try Surmai i.e. Mackerel or any other fish you like)….1 Kg

Garlic Paste……………………………………………………………………….1 tsp

Ginger Paste……………………………………………………………………….1 tsp

Fish Fry Masala- (The one that I use is the Malyali Fish Fry Masala which is very easily available in the market)……………………………………………………2-3 heaped tbsp

Cornflour (This helps the coating to stick)………………………2-3 tsp

Salt, as per taste

Water……………………………………………………………………………………3-4 tbsp

Mustard Oil ……………………………………………………… ………………..for deep frying

To clean the Fish:

Gram Flour (Besan)……………………………………………………….. 1/2 cup

Mustard Oil ……………………………………………………………………..1/2 cup

Method:

Wash the fillets with water gently and in a large dish combine the gram flour and mustard oil. Rub this paste over the fish and let it sit for 15 minutes. This combination of mustard and gram flour helps clean the fish and gets it rid of any pungent odour the fish has.

After 15 minutes clean the fish with water and transfer it in a clean bowl. Combine garlic paste, ginger paste, cornflour, fish fry masala, salt and water. To this thick paste add the fish and marinate it for about 15 minutes.

Heat mustard oil in a wok. In order to get rig of the pungency of the oil, add a small clove of garlic. Remove it once it golden brown.

When the oil is hot enough, add your fillets and let it fry for 2-3 minutes on each side. Don’t forget to flip the fish so that it cooks evenly. Remember, fish is a very soft protein and does not take long to cook. One needs to be very careful while frying and manage the flame accordingly so the oil is neither too hot (which burns the fish), nor too cold (which leads to higher absorption of oil).

Use kitchen towel to absorb extra oil. Serve the fish while hot!

Serving Suggestions:

These fillets make great burger patties. slice a bun add some tartare sauce or any sauce of your choice and put a fillet or two in between. This will be the juiciest fish burger. You can add lettuce cheese, barbeque sauce or any sauce of your choice.

I like my fish just as it is with some freshly cut onion rings, lemon and a dollop of mayonnaise.

*****Note: The word for Fish in Malyalam is ‘Meen’

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