Kingfish Masala Fry
I love fish but I do not like it fried plain or in a curry. This is a cross between fried fish and curry fish. Its one of my favourite recipes. I would like to dedicate this post to my pai (my maternal grandfather) from whom I inherited my cooking genes!
• 320 gms Kingfish, cleaned and sliced
• 2 sprigs of Curry leaves
• 1/2 sour lime
• 1/4 tsp hing / asafoetida
• 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
• Salt to taste
• Oil for frying as required
Masala to roast and grind
• 7 Bedki chillies, soaked in hot water for 30 minutes (*)
• 1 tbsp coriander seeds (*)
• 1/2 tsp cumin seeds (*)
• 1/4 tsp ajwain / carom seeds (*)
• 1/4 tsp mustard seeds (*)
• 8 garlic flakes
• 1/2 inch ginger
• Small ball of tamarind
We begin with soaking the red chillies. I like to soak the red chillies in hot water to give it the vibrant red colour. This is totally optional. If you would like to tone down the spice quotient, de seed the chillies.
Next, on a low flame roast all the ingredients marked (*) listed under the ‘Masala to roast and grind’. Roasting the spices enhances its flavour. If you are soaking the chillies, make sure you rinse them well before roasting. Set aside the ingredients to cool. To this add garlic, ginger, tamarind and salt to taste. Using little water grind all the ingredients to a fine paste. Remove the masala in a vessel. Using little water rinse the mixer and set the water aside as well.
Marinate the fish with sour lime, hing / asafoetida, turmeric powder, salt and 1 tbsp of the ground masala. Let this marinate for 30 minutes.
Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the fish. Cook about 5 minutes on each side and set aside.
In the same pan, add a little more oil and heat it. Add curry leaves and fry. Do not burn. To this add the remaining ground masala and sauté it till the raw smell disappears. It will take you about five or six minutes on medium flame. Add the water from the masala and cook till oil separates from the Masala. Turn to low flame. Gently add the fried Kingfish and coat the slices evenly with the masala. Cook till it is done. Serve on banana leaf (if it is easily available) with raw onion rings and sour lime.