The humble katla goes for a facelift this morning.
Neither the ubiquitous coriander powder scented jhol nor the piquant mustard paste laced wicked jhal that catches my fancy, I whip up a delectable doi maach, pair the fish with yoghurt perfumed with green cardamom, cinnamon and cloves. Spiked with mean green chillies and the earthy warmth of ginger. And a throw of plump raisins for just that hedonistic decadence.
Doi Maach. Quintessentially Bengali.
Food heaven !!!
Doi Maach (Fish in Yogurt)
- 4 pcs rohu or katla fish
- 3 tbsps onion paste
- 2 tsps ginger paste
- 1 tsp green chili paste
- 1/2 cup yogurt , whipped
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp red chili powder
- 2 - 3 bay leaves
- 1 - 2 green cardamom
- 1 - 2 cloves
- 1 inch cinnamon stick
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
- 4 tbsps mustard oil
- 1/2 tbsp ghee
- 1 tbsp raisins soaked in water
- salt to taste
- Marinate the fish with little turmeric powder and salt. Keep aside.
- Coarsely crush the green cardamon, cloves and cinnamon using a mortar and pestle, keep aside.
- Add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, ginger paste, green chili paste and salt to the whipped yogurt, mix well. Keep aside.
- Heat 2 tbsp oil in a frying pan, shallow fry the fish. Keep aside on a kitchen towel.
- Add the remaining oil to the pan, when smoking hot, throw in the coarsely ground whole spices and bay leaves. Allow them to splutter and release their fragrance.
- Add in the onion paste and about 1/2 tsp of sugar, fry over a medium flame till oil starts to separate from the onion paste.
- Lower the heat and gently pour in the whipped yogurt to the pan while continuously stirring. Cook for 3-4 minutes. (You would not want the curd to split. Lowering the flame and continuous stirring is key here.)
- Add the fried fish, throw in the green chillies and the raisins and 1/2 a cup of warm water. Continue to cook for another 5 odd minutes.
- Sprinkle in the remaining sugar, adjust the seasonings and finish with a generous dollop of ghee and a hearty pinch of garam masala powder.
- Serve hot with rice.