Bengali style Fish Curry with Whiting/Lady Fish

Bengalis and Keralites have plenty in common, a fact that’s become common knowledge now due to the numerous Internet memes floating around.

(For my international readers, Bengalis are the natives of West Bengal, a state in the Eastern part of India while Keralites are the natives of Kerala, a state in the Southern part of India).

An outsider might not find much similarity but if you delve deep, there are quite a few that these states have in common in terms of politics, literature, art, fashion and food.

Now let’s talk about food, since that’s our topic of interest. The most obvious similarity between the cuisines would be the ‘rice and fish curry’ obsession. There cannot be a more comforting meal than this, a combination that is relished across the length and breadth of both the states.

Seafood is much revered in both states as they enjoy an envious coastline. But the irony is that there ends the similarity too because apart from the seafood craze, there’s hardly much in common when it comes to preferred seafood varieties or style of preparation.

When I started learning more about the cuisines from other parts of India, the one that I was most hesitant to try out in my kitchen was Bengali cuisine, simply because of the use of mustard oil. Initially, I tried adapting the dishes using vegetable or coconut oil but soon realised that I am not doing any justice to the cuisine of Bengal. That’s when I slowly learnt to use mustard oil in the right quantities and also pick out dishes that are more familiar to my tastebuds. And the journey, ofcourse, began with seafood.

Bengali style Fish Curry with Whiting/Lady Fish -

Today, there are plenty of Bengali dishes I cook on a regular basis in my kitchen like this simple cabbage dish or this delicious fish curry. But the learning never stops and so here is another delicacy from the Bengali kitchen – a simple fish curry using Silver Whiting.

Fish and potatoes is a very unique combination but one that is extremely popular in Bengali cuisine. Though initially skeptical, I was amazed at how beautifully both the ingredients come together in this curry. The combination of mustard seeds with kalonji (onion seeds) and other spices and aromatics lend an earthy flavour to the curry that has to be enjoyed with steamed rice.

Bengali style Fish Curry with Whiting/Lady Fish -

(Do you cook Bengali dishes at home? What’s your favourite?)


  1. 500gms ladyfish; cleaned (head removed)
  2. 1 medium potato; cut into long wedges/strips
  3. 1 large onion; grind to a paste with no water

This recipe was developed, styled and shot for Supreme Seafood, so visit their website for the full recipe.

Bengali style Fish Curry with Whiting/Lady Fish -


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7 thoughts on “Bengali style Fish Curry with Whiting/Lady Fish

  1. Rach March 25, 2018 at 4:31 pm Reply

    Hi,I loved the presentation and can’t wait to try the recipe.Could you share with me what material are the plates please. Thanks much

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya March 26, 2018 at 12:26 am Reply

      Thanks a lot Rach; the plates and bowls are a mix of copper and brass.


  2. Sayan March 13, 2018 at 12:23 pm Reply

    Hi the dish looks good but it is not macher kalia. It is macher jhol or plain old fish curry.
    Kalia is different kind of dish .
    We Bongs are too sentimental about our dishes so have to comment here. Please do your own research. Misinformation regarding any cuisine and culture will make wrong notions and conception about that particular culture.
    A fellow blogger and true blue bong.

    Liked by 1 person

    • vanyadhanya March 13, 2018 at 12:42 pm Reply

      Could you tell me what a Kalia is then? Every one is sentimental about their food so I dont think you need to take it personally. I have many Bengali friends but no one commented its not correct. So can you point out the difference?


    • vanyadhanya March 14, 2018 at 1:51 am Reply

      Since talking to you, I spoke to more friends (true Bongs as you put it) and I understand why you mentioned its not a Kalia. But there were also a few who mentioned that this version exists. Since I havent got a complete answer yet, I have decided to remove Kalia from the title. Hopefully I will get to learn more about the history of this dish and can give you a confirmed answer. Thanks for writing in.


  3. Jessica March 13, 2018 at 4:56 am Reply

    Yummy fish curry.. thanks for sharing

    Liked by 1 person

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