Mom’s recipes are always the best. Here is a popular kerala fish curry with mathy/chala/sardines the way my amma prepares. Sardines are considered the BEST wholesome food for a variety of reasons including the abundance of omega 3 fatty acids in them. More importantly, it has been a part and parcel of an average Keralite’s daily diet. This curry tastes the best when served with rice or kappa puzhukku or mashed tapioca…
Mathy/Chala/Sardines 1 lb/ ½ kg
Ginger 1TBSP, finely chopped
Garlic 1 TBSP, finely chopped
Turmeric powder ¼ tsp
Kashmiri chilly powder 2 TBSP
Coriander powder 1 TBSP
Fenugreek powder ¼ tsp
Or instead of powders you can add only
Eastern fish masala 3 TBSP
Gamboge 3 small pieces
Curry leaves 2 sprigs
Mustard seeds ½ tsp
Coconut Oil 2 TBSP
Salt as needed
Clean and cut the fish into medium size pieces.
Make a paste of chilly powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder with little water and keep aside or if you are using eastern fish masala make a paste of the same with little water.
Heat oil at medium high flame in a clay pot/manchatti and splutter the mustard seeds and add the ginger and garlic. When they turn light brown add one sprig of curry leaves. Reduce flame and add the chilly-coriander-turmeric paste or the eastern fish masala. Stir continuously until the raw smell is gone and oil starts to separate. Now add 1 cup of water to this along with salt and fenugreek powder. Also add the gamboge and bring to a boil. Add the fish pieces and cook covered for 5 minutes. Rotate the claypot/manchatti and continue cooking until fish pieces are completely cooked through and the gravy get thickened. It may take about 15-20 minutes. Rotate the pot every 5 minutes to ensure proper mixing of masalas. Lastly add 1 tsp coconut oil and the other sprig of curry leaves. Enjoy with rice/kappa.