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Bengali Fish Curry with Whiting/Lady Fish

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Bengali, Indian, Seafood


  • 500 gms ladyfish; cleaned head removed
  • 1 medium potato; cut into long wedges/strips
  • 1 large onion; grind to a paste with no water
  • 3-4 garlic cloves; grated
  • 1 inch ginger; grated
  • 1 medium ripe tomato; finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
  • ¼ tsp onion seeds/kalonji
  • 4-5 green chillies; slit lengthwise
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • Salt to season
  • ¼ tsp garam masala
  • Mustard oil – to fry the fish + make the curry


  • Clean the fish well. Add 1 tsp turmeric powder and salt, rub well into the fish and keep aside for 10 minutes.
  • Heat mustard oil in a pan and shallow fry the fish till half done. Remove and keep aside.
  • In the same oil, fry the potatoes till almost done; remove and keep aside.
  • You can use the same pan for preparing the curry (there should be around 3-4 tbsp oil to prepare the gravy so add more oil if necessary).
  • Add the onion seeds followed by the onion paste, grated ginger and garlic. Sauté for 4-5 minutes on low heat constantly stirring.
  • Then add the tomatoes and green chillies; sauté till the tomatoes are broken down and mushy.
  • Next add the remaining turmeric powder, cumin powder, chilli powder and sugar; mix well and continue to sauté on low heat till the oil starts appearing at the sides of the masala.
  • Add 1-2 cups water depending on how much gravy you prefer, season with salt and bring to boil.
  • Add the fried fish and potatoes to the gravy; cook covered on medium heat for 5 minutes or till the fish has cooked well.
  • Next add the garam masala, mix well taking care not to break the fish and remove from heat.
  • Serve warm with steamed rice