Creating a blog was out of the question for a long time for me, as measuring everything in the kitchen was like biting into an eggshell. I enjoy cooking and don’t want to waste even a slightest bit of enjoyment in that small world of mine. But little did I know that everything will change, when my husband came home with the Oscar nominated film ‘Julie and Julia’( a real life story) where Julie Powell (part played by Amy Adams) challenged herself to make all the 524 recipes from Julia Child's cook book ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’ and blogging all her experiences (The Julie/Julia Project). It was an inspiring movie. A few days later when we were discussing this casually with a friend of ours over tea…everything changed dramatically…..” How about you making at least half of it in one year? Not French but your own. 262 recipes that will inspire others and present it as a blog?” For a minute my mind traveled faster than light… With an experience as a helper in my mother in laws kitchen for 6 years followed by a three year everyday struggle to satisfy the palate of my foodie husband, if I cannot do it then why should I cook? But on the other side with an experience in English literature extending no more than expanding outline stories in English grammar class when I was 18 and two small kids that come in handy at times, will a commitment for the next one year work? Anyway my ‘cook's ego’ didn’t allow me to say no...

So my friends …here I am opening my recipe book, trying to perfect and present 262 recipes in the coming 365 days….A Challenge that will of course tastes good. Come.. Have a walk with me along my journey.. Cheering and inspiring….Forgiving and tolerating…Testing and tasting….for ‘A Tasty Challenge’

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Pacha Theenga Aracha Meen Curry (Fish in ground Coconut Sauce)

Recipe No: 239
Ingredients                                        Serves 4
  • Fish……………………………..1/2 Kg (Cleaned and cut into pieces)
  • Coconut Oil………………....2 Tablespoons
  • Onion sliced thin…………..1 Cup
  • Ginger sliced thin…………2 Tablespoons
  • Indian Green Chilly……..4; slit into two
  • Curry Leaves……………….2 Sprigs
  • Turmeric Powder…………1/4 Teaspoon
  • Red Chilly Powder……….2 Teaspoons
  • Coriander Powder……….2 ½ Teaspoons
  • Tomato……………………….1 small sliced
  • Tamarind…………………...1 small piece
  • Salt as needed
  • 1 teaspoon of Coconut Oil and a sprig of Curry Leaves to sprinkle on top
To grind into a paste
  • Grated Coconut…………….3/4 Cup (unsweetened)
  • Garlic………………………….2 Big pieces
  • Ginger…………………………1 small piece
  • Shallots…………………….…2 big ones
  • Cumin Powder………….… 1/3 Teaspoon
  • Turmeric Powder…….…..1/2 Teaspoon
Method of Preparation
  1. Grind all the ingredients mentioned in the ‘to grind’ section into a smooth consistency using minimum Water (up to 1 cup is fine in a blender) and keep aside till ready to be used.
  2. Heat Coconut Oil in a Chatti (an earthen cooking vessel)/ pan on medium heat and saute Onion, Ginger, Green Chilly and Curry Leaves till translucent.
  3. Add Turmeric Powder, Red Chilly Powder and Coriander Powder and saute till the raw smell is gone for about 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  4. Add Tomato followed by Salt and 1 ½ cups Water; close the pan and let it Boil on high heat.
  5. Once boiled, add the Fish and let it cook on medium heat till half done.
  6. Add the ground Coconut paste and let it finish cooking and the gravy becomes thick and reduced to a desired consistency. (Oil will start to float on top at this stage.)
  7. Squeeze Tamarind in ¼ cup Water and add its juice into the cooked fish. (Discard the undissolved portions of the Tamarind.)
  8. Swirl the pan to mix and do a taste test. Add more Salt if needed.
  9. Switch off the heat; pour some Coconut Oil on top followed by some torn Curry Leaves; close the pan and let it sit for 20 minutes before serving.
Notes:
  • Instead of using Tamarind you can use Kokum/ Kudampuli too. It gives a very unique flavor to the curry. (I tasted it from a friend of mine and it tasted awesome. Now at times I make this curry with Kokum too.)  I should say this same Curry made with Tamarind and Kokum tastes different. Kokum is available in most of the Indian stores.
  • If you are using Kokum instead of Tamarind, add 2-3 pieces of Kokum into the Curry before adding the Fish.
  • Don’t add  the Tamarind Juice all at once. Do add bit by bit and adjust the sourness according to your taste.
  • Don’t stir the Curry after adding the Fish; but swirl the pan at times to avoid the Fish from sticking to the bottom.
  • This curry tends to become thick as it sits; keep this in mind when you adjust the level of gravy.
  • The resting period at the end is important as the elders call it 'Pathrapakam' meaning the time the dish should sit in its cooking vessel for maximum taste.
  • This Curry tastes the best if you use grated Coconut from a fresh Coconut.
 




Make it, enjoy the deliciousness and 
serve it to your family with love…


7 comments:

sojo said...

this is my fav.... I usually make thala curry like this- deadly combi.. love thala and love this prep...especially avoli (pomfret) thala.... hee hee

Mehjabeen Arif said...

yummy fish curry.. slurp :) mouth watering.

new to ur space and happy to follow u for more wonderful recipes..

do visit my space when u get time
http://comeletseat.blogspot.com

Vimitha Anand said...

I make fish curry like this and I love the flavor of coconut...

enteruchilokam said...

yummy fish curry

Priya said...

Seriously am drooling over that irresistible meen curry,mouthwatering here..

Sarah Naveen said...

ente fav!!! asha u r tempting me a lot!!! yummo!!

Ravi Madur said...

Hi I am new to this blog. One of my friends madhu from New delhi referred me this blog to learn about all non veg recipes. i was really impressed for these many recipes using using non veg. I am very exited to make my first dish on non veg pickles with your blog inspiration. Thanks alot.

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