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Fish Cooked in Yogurt (a Bengali curry)

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Joined: Dec 11, 2005


Posted to Thread #52 at 6:41 pm on Dec 23, 2005

My notes:

I used two-inch cuts of halibut for this curry. I used ¼ teaspoon of fenugreek seed powder in lieu of fenugreek seeds, shelled and crushed green cardamoms, and low fat yogurt. I was not aesthetically correct. I should have taken the time to find the yellow (golden) raisins!

I served it with saffron rice (basmati). I really must make this again because it was soooo good!

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The Great Curries of India
by Camellia Panjabi
Simon & Schuster

This is another popular fish curry from Bengal, which is usually made with carp. It is only in Bengal that you will find fish and yogurt cooked together.

Serves 4

1 lb. 5 oz. pieces of fish
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
2 teaspoons mustard powder
1-1/2 teaspoons coriander powder
¾ teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons ginger, peeled and chopped
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
5 tablespoons oil
½ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 green chile, finely chopped
2-in. cinnamon stick
5 green cardamoms
3 cloves
2 medium onions, finely sliced
1 cup whipped plain yogurt
¾ teaspoon sugar
2 small tomatoes, chopped
3 tablespoons sultanas or yellow seedless raisins (soaked in water)

1. Skin and wash the fish well. Mix ½ teaspoon salt with the lemon juice and smear over the fish. Leave for half an hour then wash off..

2. Mix all 5 spice powders, the ginger and garlic with ½ cup water to make a spice mixture.

3. In a large saucepan heat the oil and add the fenugreek seeds, chopped green chile, cinnamon and cardamom. After 30 seconds add the cloves. After 10 seconds add the onions and fry till light brown (12-15 minutes). Add the spice mixture and cook on a low heat until most of the moisture has dried up. Then sauté the spices for a couple of minutes more, stirring continuously.

4. Add 2 tablespoons water and cook for 1 minute, then pour in 2 cups water and simmer for 10 minutes, so that the onions soften and the spices cook properly.

5. Turn the heat very low, add the whipped yogurt and stir continuously for 3 minutes. Add the sugar, tomatoes and up to 1 cup water, depending on the gravy required, and 1 teaspoon salt and stir well. Put the fish in gently and cook for 3 minutes, uncovered, before turning the pieces over. Add sultanas after 3 minutes and cook, uncovered, until the fish is perfectly done.

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