Monday, April 1, 2013

A Simple Fish Curry

This simple fish curry is made with bottle gourd. Like dal and bhaji (fried veggies) fish curry is as common in most households. Either on its own with a blend of spices, or with different varieties of gourd, or leafy greens. My neighbour gifted me a bottle gourd from her garden the other day. Fresh and tender ones have a natural sweetness and this made the curry all the more delicious.


Fish (I used a variety of 
snakehead popular in our region)         10 pieces

Bottle gourd                                      about 400 grams

Green chillies                                    8

Onions                                              2 large

Ginger/garlic paste                              a quarter teaspoon

Salt to taste


Mustard oil                                         half a cup

Coriander powder                                1 teaspoon


Serrated coriander or
coriander                                             1 bunch  


  • Peel and cut the gourd and then dice it fine. 
  • Wash the fish pieces and drain. Rub a bit of salt and turmeric to the fish pieces and keep aside. 
  • Heat oil in a pan. When it comes to smoking point, fry the fish pieces, a few at a time. A few minutes on each side will do. They need not be cooked through at this point. Remove from the pan. 
  • Grate the onions and make a paste of the ginger and the garlic.
  • In the same oil, fry the onions. When they start to change colour, throw in the chillies after chopping them. Also add the turmeric, coriander powder and the garlic and ginger paste. In case you think the powdered spices might burn, you can sprinkle a bit of water as you add them.
  • Then add the diced vegetable. Cover and keep cooking. With all the liquid from the gourd it's a matter of cooking in its own juices! Stir in between. 
  • When the vegetable is nearly done you can add about half a cup of hot water to the pan. Then add the fried pieces of fish.Cook for five minutes or so before removing from the stove.
  • Wash the coriander, finely chop them, and garnish the curry with the same.  
This dish is best with steaming hot rice. I have not mentioned the amount of turmeric to be used in this dish. That depends on individual tastes and how  you want the look of the curry to be. I prefer mine to be paler than the particular strong yellow colour that thoughts of anything "curried" brings to mind.           
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