Fried Whole Pomfret... Kerala Toddy Shop Style!

The word 'Kerala' and I'm nostalgic. When 'Kerala' and 'fish' come together, it is absolutely delightful! Fish totally dominates any typical diet in Kerala and finds its way to every nook and corner of the cuisine. The second thing that dominates Kerala, next to fish, is the toddy shop:) And the food you get there! It is most hot, most spicy, most oily and most delicious. Any visit to Kerala and its coastal region is incomplete without a visit to the toddy shop. The most popular fried fish that you find in these shops are the 'pearl spot' fish. The recipe you find below is mostly used with the pearl spot fish, I have tried it with pomfret and the result has been lovely.

This is also the easiest way to fry fish, according to me, as I don't have to do any cutting. Saves time!
RECIPE: (for 2 pomfrets)
Whole Pomfrets - 2
Ginger - 1 and 1/2 inch piece
Garlic - 6 flakes
Turmeric Powder - 1 teaspoon
Red Chilly Powder - 3 to 4 teaspoon (according to your spice tolerance)
Black Pepper Powder - 1 teaspoon
Curry leaves - 3 sprigs, the leaves separated
Oil for shallow frying.

Take the pomfrets and wash them thoroughly. Make cuts on both sides of each pomfret (1).
Take the ginger and garlic and crush them with a mortar/pestle (2 & 3).
Mix the turmeric powder, red chilly powder, black pepper powder and the salt in a bowl with very little water (4).
Add the crushed ginger-garlic into the powder mix and incorporate everything well.
Smear the mix on each pomfret, making sure the marinade is well reaching each cut that you have made in them.
Leave it marinated in the refrigerator for 3 hours.
When ready to fry, heat a flat pan, add 3 tablespoons of oil.
When the oil is hot, add the curry leaves in it and the pomfret, one at a time (6).
Close the pan with a lid and reduce the flame to low.
Wait for 3 minutes, open the lid and carefully turn the pomfret (without breaking it) to the other side.
Close the pan again and wait for another 3 minutes.
Once the fish is thoroughly done (it would take less than 7 minutes), take out carefully.
Serve with sliced onions rubbed in with a little vinegar and chopped green chillies.

To make a meal, serve this with steamed white rice and the quintessential yellow yoghurt curry that you find in the Kerala Syrian Christian homes. This is next to heaven for me!

Lots of love and happiness:)


Priti S said…
Looks so yum with such pretty pics
Awesome!!! raavile thanne kothippichallo chechi, innu officil pokathe ithokke undaakki kazhu\ichu veettil irikkaan thonnunnu :(
Sangeeta Madhav said…
Why dont u just come over!!! Lets lunch together!
Sangeeta Madhav said…
Absolutely Prathibha!
lovely fried fish... so glad to have found your blog, you have such a beautiful space with amazing pictures... happy to follow u... :)
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BJFO said…
I'm making a version of this in London, thanks for the inspiration
Lucky Sign said…

Nice and crispy snack...Loved the idea of using kerela fry...Looks delicious.. thankyou for shearing this information with us!chowringhee
NV356E said…
Love your blog man.

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