When we relocated to Kerala in 2014, I learnt the technique of cooking in earthen pots. They look easy but before you start using them, we have to season them. Yes!! You heard it right!!! The earthenware needs proper seasoning else they tend to break once they are exposed to fire (I am talking about the gas flame here :)) I shall write a seperate blog on different methods to season an earthen pot.
Cooking in earthenware is supposedly healthy and the food is much tastier comparatively. Especially seafood and meat taste outstanding.
If ever you happen to come accross an earthenware, without a second thought grab one for yourself and trust me you won’t regret buying it.
The post today is of a simple fish curry. I have used mackerel for this. You can also use pomfret. They taste good too. This has a flavour of coriander, garlic and blends well with steaming hot rice. I personally don’t like eating this with anything else. You can try them with chapatis and dosas too.
Mackerel – 5 (cleaned, washed and marinated with salt and turmeric)
Grated coconut – 1/2 cup
Red chillies – 8 to 10
Coriander seeds – 1.5tbsp
Fenugreek seeds/methi – 1tsp
Garlic – 6 pods
Tamarind paste – 1/2tsp
Salt to taste
Coconut oil – 2tbsp
- In a pan add little coconut oil. Roast the coriander seeds, methi and red chillies.
- Add garlic to this and roast till garlic turns brown.
- Transfer it in a mixer grinder. Add tamarind paste and little water. Grind to a smooth paste.
- Transfer it into the chatti/earthen pot and add water if required
- Bring this to boil
- Add mackerel pieces into this gravy and adjust salt accordingly.
- Donot cook the mackerel for more than 7-8 mins. Overcooking them is not a good idea! they shred very quickly. Fish cooks very quick (sometimes in less than five minutes) and remember not to fiddle with the fish using a ladle when its cooking. With a mitten hold the two sides of pot and in clockwise directing mix the curry.
- Pour the remaining coconut oil and turn off the stove.
- You can add a tablespoon or two of coconut milk to the gravy
- You also can add slit chillies when the mackerel is put in while cooking. This enhances the spice level and I do follow this.
- Adding coconut oil is not mandatory and you can skip it.