Thursday, October 30, 2014

Quick Raja Phanna Upkari ( Mackeral cooked in spicy onion tempered sauce)

Any Mangalorean GSB is familiar with Raja  Phanna upkari. This is mackerel curried in a fiery red and equally spicy sauce is traditionally made with a paste of ground dried red chillies and roasted coriander seeds that has then been tempered with fried onions. While it is commonly made with  Mackerel, it can also be made using sardines and shrimp. It is absolutely delicious. I do not do any grinding. I have a cheat trick for it. By now, I am sure you all know that I like everything quick and easy! :)

Servings: 3-4

Ingredients :

Mackeral : 1 large cut into medium slices.
Onion: 1 medium, chopped fine
Kashmiri Red chilli powder: 1 1/2- 2 tsp ( adjust based on your spice level)
Coriander powder: 1 heaped tsp
Haldi powder: 1/2 tsp
Coconut oil: 1 tsp + 1 tbsp
Tamarind pulp: 1/2 tsp
Water: 1/2 + 1 1/2 cups
Salt: to taste


Clean the fish thoroughly, marinate with salt and turmeric powder and keep aside for 15-20 minutes.

Dissolve tamarind pulp in 1/2 cup of water and keep aside.

Heat coconut oil in a small pot on medium heat. Add coriander powder, chilli powder and sauté for few seconds.Add the tamarind pulp, 1 1/2 cups water, quarter of the chopped onions, salt and bring it to a boil.

Now add the marinated fish slices to the sauce, cover and cook until the fish is tender ( around 10 minutes). You can adjust the time based on how cooked you want the fish to be.

In a small frying pan heat 1 tbsp of coconut and fry the rest of the chopped onions until golden brown.

Add these onions to the above pot.

Serve hot with steamed white or brown rice.

Yum! Enjoy!

Cooking made easy:

Mackerel can at times be smelly. Any fish that is fresh should not smell! However, if you are like me who loves fish but does not like "fishy" smell on the dishes, hands etc then the best way to clean your fish and get rid of this leftover fishy smell is to clean the fish with a little lemon juice and salt. This is a sure way of getting rid of the lingering "fishy" smell. You can also wash using a diluted solution of vinegar.

Tip for healthy living:

Eating fish on a regular basis is a great way to keep healthy. Fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids that play an important anti-inflammatory role in the body.

Food for thought:

Any truth is better than infinite doubt. Arthur Conan Doyle