No Onion No Garlic Bengali Fish Curry

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India has a huge coastal area, the entire peninsula has abundance of coasts and even regions inside the mainland have access to rivers providing fish and seafood. Most people in these areas with access to water are “fishatarians”, but fish has always been associated with Bengalis. Even though Bengalis eat a lot of vegetables, we are considered to be people who cannot live without fish, probably its partly true.
My school used to start at 9 in the morning and days when I wanted to skip school I used to pester my mom to have rice and fish curry before going to school. My mom being what she is, knew my intentions and came up with this fish curry which gets ready in less than 10 minutes.
Its been almost two decades since I have left school. But, that fish curry still entices me. This recipe is without use of onion or garlic. If you want to use onions, you can skip the tempering with cumin seeds.

Ingredients:
4 pieces of rui fish
1 medium potato
1 tomato, optional
1 tablespoon ginger paste
2 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
3 tablespoon mustard oil
Salt to taste
Directions:
Clean the pieces of fish, get any excess water out, and sprinkle with salt and 1 teaspoon turmeric powder. Marinate for about 10 minutes
Cut the potatoes thinly, like french fries. Wash and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder and salt
In a wok heat about 2 tablespoons of oil. Once the oil is smoking hot, gently place the pieces of fish and fry each side for 3 – 4 minutes. You can do this is batches
Once the fishes are fried, keep them aside, and in the same oil add the potatoes, fry for about 3 minutes. Add the cumin seeds to the potatoes, and saute for a minute.
In a small bowl take 2 tablespoon of water; mix in all the spices along with ginger paste.
Add the paste to the potatoes, and stir to coat. If using tomatoes, add them now. Saute for a few more minutes in low flame till the oil starts to separate.
Pour in about a cup of water, cook covered for 5 minutes. Put the fried pieces of fish, cover and cook for another 2 minutes.
Serve hot with rice

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2 thoughts on “No Onion No Garlic Bengali Fish Curry

  1. The tempering could be of panch phoron (tempering) (five spices – fennel, cumin, mustard, nigella, Fenugreek seeds), or simply cumin seeds, nigella seeds tempered in mustard oil. Vegetables could be Parwal/potol (pointed gourds), cauliflower florets (seasonal) or green plantains or egg plants. The spices and the vegetables also somewhat depend on the type of fish. Spices could be coriander powder/paste and turmeric powder/paste.

    Bon appetite

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