Fish Dhaniya/ Fish in Coriander Curry

If you follow my blog, you may have noticed my affinity for fish recipes. I know, being a Bengali is reason enough but how can anyone ignore the huge variety of fish that is always at hand. So why not explore? Thus, I picked up some fresh Norwegian mackerel from the Asian grocery store in the area. But I was really having a hard time deciding what to make with it, as I had never cooked it before. Then I figured out that it is always wise to fall back on tradition on such occasions. Back home we often had this light curry, loaded with fresh coriander leaves/ cilantro, typically prepared with fresh fish. It was always a hit, and it didn't fail this time too. So, next time you get confused with fresh fish, this can be your go to recipe. 

And I think I forgot to mention that the fish itself tasted awesome. It was in fact a discovery of a sort as it smells and tastes quite similar to Hilsa/ Ilish. I know the Bongs love Ilish but it isn't always available and sometimes quite expensive. So if are craving for some, you should pick up some Norwegian mackerel (if available) at a much more affordable price. After realizing its likeness with Ilish, I tried the Sorshe (mustard) Ilish recipe with it and it turned out to be amazing.

Now, lets get back it this one.

Fish Dhaniya


Fish (cut in pieces): 1 lb
Turmeric powder: 1 1/2 tsp
Cumin powder: 1 tsp
Ginger paste: 1 tsp
Onions (sliced): 1/2 cup
Green chillies (slit): 4
Tomatoes (chopped): 1 cup
Coriander leaves/ Cilantro (chopped) : 1 cup
Oil: 3 tbsp
Salt to taste


Marinate the fish pieces with turmeric powder (1 tsp) and salt for 15 to 20 minutes.

Heat oil in a pan, and lightly fry the fish. Keep it aside after frying.

In the same pan, saute the onions. Then add ginger paste and saute some more.

Mix the rest of turmeric powder and cumin powder in some water and add to the pan.

Mix well, and add the tomatoes, green chillies and salt. Saute till the masala releases oil and the tomatoes get cooked.

Now add the fish. You may add some water if the masala seems very dry, but not too much to make it very runny. Coat the fish nicely in the curry.

Finally, add the coriander leaves, so that it covers the fish pieces. Do not stir, cover the pan with a lid and let it cook for 3 to 4 minutes.

Your Fish Dhaniya is ready.

Garnish it with some more coriander leaves and green chilli if you wish. Serve it with steamed rice.

Photographs by Swakshar Ghosh.


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