Ria's Collection: FISH MOLEE

Friday, August 8, 2014


This curry is a Malayali Special,no matter where you are! It is always there on wedding menu's, evening dinner parties, lunch buffet etc., Which ever good restaurant you go to, it will be there. It is sometimes spelt as Fish Moilee too. I prefer to call it Fish Molee because that's how we refer to this curry at home. Moreover, my paternal Grandmother Mamma, was fondly known as Molly!When I was little I used to think if this curry had the same name as hers!
To be honest, whenever I go for weddings in South Kerala and I see the usual nadan spread for lunch, I am truly dissapointed. This could be the Northern Kerala effect. There, it's either a full fledged Sadya or an aromatic, flavourful 'Koyi' Biriyani (Chicken Biriyani) or Mutton /Kuttan Biriyani followed by an a spread of desserts. I like our regular fare for our daily meals and special something for special occasions.
We bought some Salmon filet over the weekend and I was wondering what to make with it other than our usual Meen Vevichathu, Creamy Tomato & Coconut Fish Curry or the Kannur Meen Curry. I wanted something simple because heavy masala can mask the flavour of Salmon. After flipping through my cookbooks, I saw this recipe in Ente Tharavaadu Pachakam by Aswathy Mathan. I have cooked so many dishes from that book already and  Easy Chicken Masala is one of them. That book is a real gem, I tell ya!
This curry is super easy to make,like most fish curries. Fish gets cooked fast so it's a quick one to rustle up especially if you have all the ingredients on hand. I used tinned coconut milk this time and the recipe calls for extracting your own. Go with whatever you generally do. It will be delicious! There was no need for any modification because the recipe is just perfect!

500 grams seer fish,cleaned & cut up
4 tablespoon coconut oil
2 cup sliced red onion
5 serrano chilies,slit
6 cloves garlic,slit
1 inch piece of ginger, julienned
2 sprigs curry leaves
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 1/2 cup grated coconut
1 large tomato,cut into 1/4 inch circles
1 tablespoon vinegar
Salt & pepper to taste

Method: Extract milk from the coconut. You will need 1 cup of thick milk and 2 cups of thin milk. If you are using canned, like me, use a 13 oz can of coconut milk. Measure 1 cup from it and add water to the remaining to make 2 cups.
In a large pan, heat the oil . Dilute turmeric powder with 2 tablespoon water and add it to the oil. Add the fish pieces to it a few at a time and fry just until they are yellow in colour,turning once. Do not let it brown.We just need to get the colour onto the fish, that is all.
Remove the mildly fried fish to a plate and to that same oil, add onions,garlic,ginger, serrano chilies, curry leaves and saute till the onions are soft on medium high, about 5 minutes.Add the thin coconut milk and vinegar to it and let it come to a boil. When it starts to boil, slide in the fish carefully and reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook till the fish is done, 8-10 minutes.After the fish is cooked,place the tomato slices over the curry and cook for a minute or two. Add the thick coconut milk and let it heat through completely. Do not let it boil. Serve hot with appam or white bread.

There are a few things that you need to keep in mind while making a Fish Molee. Amma told me to. It's about chopping your tomatoes and sauteeing the onions. Tomatoes have to be cut into 1/4 inch thick circles and cooked just until they are soft and loses their bright red colour. Same is the case with onions,slice them and not a dice as they need to be soft and not cooked down so much that they melt into the sauce.It seems they are the main thing you should notice when you look at a Fish Molee!


Happy’s Cook said...

In my to do list...yet to try...

Hamaree Rasoi said...

It's delicious and lovely looking malaylee fish curry. Excellent pics as well.

Cisy said...

Tried Fish Molee It tasted great!Our family enjoyed!

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