Being bangalis and with the constant pestering of our mothers to have fish, we decided to start off the food blogging with our very primary source of protein -MAACHH!
We will talk about some of the famous bengali fish cuisines which are easy to cook and also forms the backbone of our bangaliyana!
BHAPA SHORSHE ILISH
Starting off with the Maacher Raja (King of fish) Ilish or hilsa, we have included the most tasty and famous dish which has always been the favourite of bangalis.
Hilsa pieces, Mustard oil,Mustard paste (“shada shorshe”) , Turmeric powder and Green chilli
RECIPE:Marinate the fish with salt and turmeric powder and keep aside for 5 minutes. Heat oil in a pan and put in the fish. Don’t fry it too much, just sauté it. Now remove the fish from the pan and place it in a tiffin box. Add thick mustard paste, green chillies, turmeric powder,salt and mustard oil to the fish. Close the lid of the box. Place it in a wok half filled with water. Put something heavy on the box so it doesn’t float. Bengalis usually use the mortar to perform this task. Let the water come to a boil. Check to see whether the fish is done. After about ten to fifteen minutes remove the box from the wok. Add a little mustard oil to the fish for best results.
Serve with plain rice.
If you wish you can skip the frying process and place raw hilsa in the tiffin box instead.
CHINGRI MAACHER MALAIKARI
Prawn can also be termed as Maacher Raani (Queen of Fish). This dish with the mixture of coconut milk and chillies bring out a two dimensional taste! Here we have made the dish in the microwave which is plain and simple but tastes equally awesome compared to the traditional way.
Prawns, salt, mustard oil, butter. For the ground paste, onion, ginger,garlic, chillis, turmeric powder, water, milk.
RECIPE:Apply salt to the prawns, keep aside for 15 minutes and then wash.Mix with mustard oil and microwave for 3 minutes.Stir and keep aside.Microwave ghee for 30 seconds and mix in the masala.Cover and microwave for 2 minutes.Stir in the water and salt and microwave for 5 minutes.Add milk and microwave at 50% power for 10 minutes.Mix in the prawns and microwave for 5 minutes.
PABDA MAACHER JHAAL
Pabda Mach a.k.a Catfish is a popular fish that Bongs love. Pabda Macher Jhal which is prepared with a paste of Onion- Mustard oil and tempered with Nigella Seeds.
Pabda fish, mustard oil, onion, ginger and tomato paste, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander leaves and green chilli, salt to taste.
Doi Kaatla is a very authentic Bengali preparation served typically at lunch with pulao or white rice on a festive occasion.
Katla fish, mustard oil, yogurt, onion, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt, elaichi, sugar, green chilli.
Tel Koi or the delicious climbing perch (koi) fish when cooked with the minimum of ingredients in a hot oily broth of pure mustard oil in the simplest of methods, you get a wonderful Bengali recipe.
Koi fish, mustard oil, turmeric powder, kalo jeera, mustard paste, green chilli, bayleaf, salt.
PARSHE MAACHER JHOL
It is a delicious preparation of Parshe fish, which is cooked whole. Adding a brinjal to it enhances it’s taste.
Parshe fish, brinjal, kalo jeera, mustard oil, ginger powder/paste , cumin powder/paste salt.
Fish forms a very important part of Bengali cuisine ’cause “bangali maanei maach!”
So why don’t you give a try to cook these easy delicious and home cooked fish preparations 🙂
Photograph credit : Ambalika Deb Roy and Arhita Biswas