Fish · Indian · Konkani · Main Course · Mangalorean · Non Vegetarian · Seafood · Sides · South Indian · Starters

Fish Fry with a Konkani style batter

FISH… brings a galore of memories for me.. just the smell of fish frying in the kitchen takes me back to those times as a kid back at my ancestral house… the picture of my grandmother sitting out in the backyard on a traditional Indian chopping seat called “Addoli in konkani”, removing the scales out of the fish, cutting them into the desired sized pieces & she being surrounded with our pet cats & then a few stray all waiting for a few tidbits from the fish cleaning.. & then our pet dogs barking away at the cats.. 😉 those occasional pushes to those cats trying to steal a few pieces away.. 😀 & then after all that the process of her marinating the fish with a bright red coloured masala for marination (Yes, it was made of dried red chilli’s,water & salt ground to a paste with a generous splash of asafoetida). This paste was always made is excess, the fridge would always have some ready for those times when one of my uncle’s would come home with some fresh catch he bought for a bargain.. 😉 I’m sure all of you could visualise this from the way I have described…
Back at home King Fish, Sardines, Tuna, Sear Fish, Shark are some of the very frequently eaten varieties.. Here you do not find most of these varieties.. I’m a sea fish lover.. I know friends who love river fish.

I cannot really eat river fish. Meat from river fish tastes a wee bit on the sweeter side, the bones are places in a crazy manner.. Man I almost scratched the inside of my mouth eating river fish… It was embarrassing as I was invited for lunch to a friend’s place… They were Bengali’s (People who belong to an Indian state called Bengal..).. & Bengali’s relish river fish.. Since I love fish they had prepared some of their delicacies..I had a big fish slice served on my plate… The piece looked nice & fleshy…& as it was the first time I was trying river fish, I cut a small piece out, had no clue at that time that the bone placement would be very different from sea fishes.. & I just threw the piece into my mouth.. bit into it & I almost screamed… I can still remember the look on my friends face.. I was still trying to save the inside of my cheeks.. & I asked my friend why were the bones not visible & the piece looked so chunky & boneless.. Then she burst out laughing explaining that river fish is way too different, people who are used to eating sea fish find it a little difficult to eat river fish.. & yes, I did have a tough time finishing that huge piece of fish on my plate.. 😦 I love my sea fish…!! Lesson learnt.. !

Well.. anyways.. let me get to the recipe.. sometimes I end up talking too much, don’t I??

I will describe a shortcut method which is similar to my grandmother’s marination recipe.

Ingredients: (Serves 2, I hope so.. 😀 ) Preparation Time: 10 mins + 10 mins for marination

  • Fish of your choice – 2 large pieces, I used boneless Salmon fillets
  • Red chilli powder – 1.5 tsp, we like our fish hot. If you can’t handle this use as per your taste
  • Coriander powder – 3 tsp
  • Asafoetida powder – a pinch
  • Turmeric powder (optional) – a pinch, my grandmothers recipe doesn’t include this. I just used this for colour
  • Rice flour – 1 tbsp
  • Cooking oil – 1 tbsp, I tava fried the fish as I did not want to deep fry, But my grandmothers original recipe requires you to deep fry the fish.
  • Salt to taste


Note: If you want to prepare this dish in the traditional way then you need to grind at least 30-40 dried red chilli’s along with some water to form a smooth thick paste. Then mix in the salt, coriander powder & asafoetida. Coat the fish with this freshly ground masala & then the deep fry the fish after marinating it & coating it with some rice flour. I prefer to use this method if I plan to fry at least a kg of fish. I use the short cut method more often since it’s just K n me & I fry just about 2-3 pieces & I can’t prepare a paste just out of 3-4 chilli’s using the blender I have.

Wash the fish & drain all the water.

Washed & drained Salmon fillets..

Mix red chilli powder, turmeric (if you wish to add turmeric), salt, asafoetida together. Add this masala mix to the fish. Coat it evenly & on the fish. Keep this aside for 10 – 15 minutes.

Marinated fish pieces..

Spread the rice powder on a plate. Once the fish is marinated place each piece one by one on the rice flour plate & make sure the fish is coated on both sides with the rice flour.

If you plan to deep fry the fish, heat oil & fry the pieces.

If you plan to tava fry as I did, in a fry pan/tava heat the amount of oil mentioned in the recipe.

Fry the fish till they are golden brown & cooked...

Set heat to medium & fry the fish till it is golden brown on both sides & cooked through.

Serving Suggestions:
1. As a starter:
Serve with some onion pieces & a slice of lemon.

Fish Fry with a Konkani style batter..

2. Traditional way as a side dish:
Serve with a bowl of boiled red rice along with a vegetable dish like Beans telasan/Potato fry & some konkani style dal – Daali Toy.

If you like this recipe – You may also like – Grilled/Baked fish in Green Masala, Meen Molee/Boneless fish pieces in a fragrant Kerala style coconut curry, Prawn Pepper Fry – Kerala style, Tava fried prawns etc.

10 thoughts on “Fish Fry with a Konkani style batter

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