Tender pieces of squid with a spicy coconut sauce makes it an enduringly popular dish.
This curry, as prepared with a paste of coconut gives a familiar aroma as the coconut based curry is more of a comfort dish to all Malayalis and Nagercoilians ofcourse.
Squid is quite easily available here in Japan and I cook it quite often at my place.
Coming to the recipe, it’s easy, too, as the squid curry is all prepared, so the whole thing takes no longer than 30 minutes from start to finish. You can substitute few ingredients like Coconut oil with any other vegetable oil and Shallot with Onion, but the former is more of a tastier one to me.
Pairing with steamed rice, Squid Curry is something which works perfectly on a lethargic weekend afternoons.
Author: Nathiya Adiseshan
Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cooking Time: 25 mins
For the Squid
250 gm, Squid
2, Green Chillies, chopped
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 inch, Ginger, crushed
For the Paste
1 cup, Coconut, (grated)
1 tsp Fenugreek seeds
1 inch Cinnamon
2 Cloves5 Shallots/ chinna vengayam/ Pearl Onions
1 tbsp Redchilli powder
2 tbsp Coriander powder
1/2 tbsp Pepper powder
Pull out the little tentacles, cut the body section into ½ inch (1 cm) rings and wash them under cold running water.
In a solid frying pan, add the grated coconut, shallots, fenugreek seeds, cardamom, cloves and cinnamon, shaking the pan now and then, until they darken slightly and become aromatic.
Add in the chilli powder, coriander powder and pepper powder, toss and allow it to cool. And grind to a smooth paste.
In a pan, add the squid along with chillies, crushed ginger, turmeric powder, salt and little water, cooking very slowly as it comes up to heat. It will only take about 2-3 minutes to cook.
When it is really hot and bubbling, add the ground masala and boil until the raw smell fades out.
Next, heat the oil in a pan, add mustard seeds, fenugreek, curryleaves and redchillies. Give a quick stir.
Then add the seasoning to the curry, serve it straight away.
This is particularly good when served with rice and fish fry.
Coconut oil can be replaced with any other vegetable oil.
Adding cinnamon in excess gives a strong taste. So add accordingly.
Instead of dry roasting the ingredients, it can be also be roasted in a tbsp of coconut oil for a richer curry.
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Northern Kerala, the malabar region has many wonderful cuisines. One such authentic dish is Biriyani.
Biriyani is always there to make us happy. Be it a lazy weekend or family get-together or any functions, it never fails to impress us. So for all the Biriyani lovers here, Come let me introduce you to the Malabar Fish Dum Biriyani.
Ghee rice and fish masala are arranged in layers and blending is done by the dum process. The fish is marinated and shallow fried before adding to the biriyani masala.
As you know biriyani is made with long grained Basmati rice, but here in this Malabar region, it is made with a short grain “kaima rice”. Now those of you, who do not have access to kaima rice, can very well try it with Basmati rice as I had done today 😜.
Ghee plays a prominent part in Malabar cuisine. If you are health conscious, you can use half ghee and half refined oil or even omit ghee and drizzle a bit of ghee finally while layering the dum too. The choice is yours.
In this Malabar recipe, I have used Seer Fish. You can use Pomfret or any fish of your choice. This is a very simple Biriyani and can be made with Chicken too. But I prefer- fish.
Devour the classic Malabar Dum Biriyani with the detailed instructions below.. (This is a fairly big post, so pls excuse).
How to make Malabar Dum Biriyani….
Author: Nathiya Adiseshan
Cooking Time: 45 mins
Preparation Time: 20 mins
Serves: 3 people
1/2 kg Seer Fish
1 1/2 cup, Kaima Rice (or any rice of your choice)
Cardamom, Cloves, Bay leaves
1 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tbsp Kashmiri Chilli Powder
Lime juice (optional)
For the gravy:
2 Onions, medium sized, thinly sliced
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 Green Chillies, thinly slit
1 Tomato, chopped
2 tbsp Curd
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
1/2 tbsp Coriander Powder
1/2 tbsp Chilli Powder
1 tsp Fennel Powder
Coriander leaves, chopped
Mint leaves, chopped
5 tbsp Ghee
Here we go….
Wash rice and soak in water for 20 minutes, drain out in a strainer and keep aside.
Marinate fish with the ingredients listed above and rest it for about 30 minutes.
Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a pan and fry cashews and raisins. Keep it aside. In the same pan, add thinly sliced onions and a pinch of sugar and fry till they are caramelised and brown.
Soak saffron in a 1 1/2 tbsp of warm milk.
In a pressure cooker, pour 3 tbsp of ghee. Add cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, star anise and bay leaves. Fry for a minute. Now add thinly sliced onions and saute until onion turns golden brown.
Now add in soaked Basmati/ Kaima rice and saute for few minutes.
Add 2 1/4 cups of boiling water (ratio is 1 cup rice= 1 and 1/2 cup water), salt and 1 tsp lemon juice. Combine well and pressure cook for two whistles. (If cooking in a kadai, cook in a medium low flame until water is fully absorbed).
Heat a pan with 1 tbsp ghee and 2 tbsp of oil, shallow fry the marinated fish pieces. Transfer it to a plate.
To the same pan, saute onion until it is slightly golden.
Add ginger garlic paste and green chillies, saute until the raw smell goes away.
Now add tomatoes and saute till it turns slightly mushy.
Add in turmeric powder, coriander powder, fennel powder, salt and curd.
Cover with a lid and cook over medium heat for few minutes. When oil starts oozing out, add the fried fish and cook for 2 minutes and switch off the flame.
For Dum process:
In a heavy bottomed pan, Spread the fish layer. To the top of it, add the rice, fried onions, nuts, rasins, coriander, mint leaves, and sprinkle saffron soaked milk.
Layer it with the remaining fish masala and rice with the garnishings on top.
Close it with a tight lid, so that steam does not escape. (Cover it with chapathi dough or aluminium foil).
Keep a dosa tawa on a low flame. And place the pan above it for 7-10 minutes for the flavours to develop. Switch off the flame and rest it for 5 minutes.
Mix gently and fluff it with fork.
Serve hot biriyani accompanied by Cucumber raita, papadam & pickle.
Adding a pinch of garam masala between the rice layers enhances the flavour (optional).
If you have thick slices of fish, shallow fry it and dum it between the rice layers. If you feel so, slices are thin and may break easily, just top it above the rice and layer it with garnishings and go for dum process.
I’ve used Kashmiri and Chilli powders, if you use chilli powder alone, adjust spice accordingly.
You can either seal the lid with chapathi dough or wrap it with aluminium foil and place a shallow plate with heavy weight above it.
When the love for food is simple and simple is good..
As kanyakumari lies on the coastal borders of India, seafood have always been predominant source for the ardent food lovers. Fish curry recipes are very common and is usually made from a variety of fish like Seer fish, Ribbon fish, Tuna, Sardines, Pomfret and many other as well to create wonderful delicacies.
Today’s recipe, Varutharacha fish curry is my Mom’s signature recipe.. Amma makes this more often, may be like, atleast once in a week.. But the taste varies each time with the fish she makes it… Varutharacha fish curry is a tamarind based curry simmered with coconut/shallots paste. The addition of coconut and shallots gives a nice aroma and light sense to it. The curry is so simple to make as it is made in one pot. Today, I have used Ribbon Fish (Belt fish / hair tail, also called as vaalai meen/ வாளை மீன்) for the curry.
This goes perfectly with steamed rice accompanied with thoran and kerala aviyal to make the meal more special.
Author: Nathiya Adiseshan
Preparation Time : 10 mins Cooking Time : 45 to 50 mins Serves : 2 to 3
2 Ribbon Fish (வாளை மீன்), cleaned and cut
1 cup Tamarind Extract
2 sprig Curry leaves
1 teaspoon Fenugreek seeds (Vendhayam/Methi)
1 teaspoon Mustard seeds(Kadugu)
2 Shallots, finely chopped
Salt, to taste
1 cup Coconut, grated
3 Shallots, peeled
1 sprig Curry leaves
2 garlic pods
1 teaspoon Cumin seeds (Jeeragam)
1 teapoon Black pepper (Nalla mizhagu, kuru mizhagu)
2 tablespoon RedChilli powder
1 tablespoon Coriander powder
1 teaspoon Turmeric powder
How to make Fish Curry Recipe
To begin making the Varutharacha fish curry recipe, wash the fish and season it with salt and turmeric powder and keep aside for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a heavy bottomed pan (preferably manchatti), heat two tablespoons of oil on medium flame. Add cumin seeds and let it crackle.
Add in grated coconut, shallots, garlic, curry leaves, black pepper and saute until the coconut turns golden brown.
Add in turmeric powder, red chilli powder and coriander powder and mix well.
Allow it to cool. Grind it to a smooth paste.
In the same pan, add in tamarind extract, ground coconut paste and a sprig of curry leaves and bring it to boil.
Place the marinated fish pieces gently on the curry.
Add appropriate amount of salt and give the curry a good stir.
Cover the pan with lid leaving some gap on the sides to avoid the gravy spilling all over.
Cook till oil floats on top.
In a tadka pan, heat oil and crackle the mustard seeds, curry leaves and shallots. Pour this over the curry.
Switch off the flame.
Serve the Kanyakumari Style Varutharacha fish curry along with steamed rice, kerala aviyal and thoran to enjoy your sunday lunch with comfort food.
Coconut oil, Curry leaves and shallots are the key ingredients for the rustic flavour of the dish.
Allow the curry to cook in a low to medium flame, if not you will end up with a looser runny curry.
This curry tastes best with Tuna, Sardines too. Give a try.