Fish curry recipe with step by step photos. Fish is one of the favorite sea foods at home and most times it is the fish fry or the pepper fish that is made as they are quick to make. I rarely make fish curry at home in Singapore as we do not like the taste of the variety we get here. They are good to make fish fry or roast but do not yield a good gravy.
Fish curry is made during our every visit to India at my mum’s home as we are accessible to fresh water fish. Though I had many reader requests for a good fish curry I had not shared one so far, since I do not make the curry in Singapore. During our visit to my mum’s home, I got to make this twice. It turned out very good so sharing it. It is roughly adapted from the prawn curry recipe on the blog.
Simple fish curry recipe card
- Fish 400 to 500 grams
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- ¼ to ½ tsp red chilli powder
- Salt as needed
- 2 tbsp oil (adjust as needed)
- 2 medium onions sliced or ¾ cup sliced
- 2 medium ripe tomatoes (do not use very sour)
- ½ tsp saunf (optional)
- 2 tbsp coconut grated
- 1 tsp red chilli powder (adjust as needed)
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- ½ tsp Jeera/ cumin
- 1 green chili chopped or slit
- 1 small onion chopped finely (optional)
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- 1 to 1 ½ tsp garam masala (refer notes)
- 1 ¼ cup water
- Marinate fish with ingredients mentioned under marination. Set aside till we need.
- Fry onions in 1 tbsp oil until lightly golden. Saute tomatoes as well until soft and mushy.
- Fry coconut, saunf, red chili powder, turmeric (optional) along with onions and tomatoes until the mixture turns fragrant. Make sure the raw smell has gone away from all the ingredients.
- Cool this and blend to a smooth or coarse paste to suit your liking. If needed add 2 tbsp water to blend well.
- This step is optional. Fry fish in 1 tsp oil slightly until the raw smell goes away just for 2 to 3 mins on both sides.
- Add 1 tbsp more oil to the kadai. Allow cumin to splutter. Fry onions, curry leaves and green chili until the onions turn golden.
- Saute ginger garlic until the raw smell goes off.
- Add the ground paste, red chili powder (optional) and garam masala. Fry until the mixture smells good.
- Pour 1 ¼ cup water. Bring it to a boil. Cook until the oil begins to separate and the gravy thickens a bit.
- Drop the fish pieces and cook on a medium heat covered.
- Gently flip them after 3 to 4 mins or more depending on the thickness of the piece.
- Cook on both the sides until cooked. Fish pieces bulge a bit when cooked completely.
- Garnish with coriander leaves if desired.
Step by step photos on how to make fish curry
1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and fry onions until golden.
2. Add tomatoes.
3. Fry until the raw smell goes away. If using very sour tomatoes, you may need to adjust the quantity slightly.
4. Add coconut, red chili powder, salt, saunf and if desired little turmeric.
5. Fry everything well until the onion masala smells good. Ensure the raw smell has gone. Cool this completely.
6. This one and next step are optional. Marinate fish with red chili powder, turmeric, very little salt and ginger garlic paste. Do not leave this marinated fish aside, just fry them right away.
7. Heat a pan with 1 tsp oil, fry the fish until the raw smell of the ginger garlic paste has gone. You can use the same pan used to fry the onions, I used a different one since I used a steel pan. Set this aside.
8. Add the cooled ingredients to a blender jar.
9. Blend to a coarse or smooth paste. We prefer coarse paste. I also added 2 tbsp water.
10. Add another tbsp. oil and crackle some cumin. Fry onions, curry leaves and green chilies. You can also skip cumin and onions at this step.
11. When the onions turn golden, fry ginger garlic paste until the raw smell goes off.
12. Add the ground paste. Mix everything well and saute for 2 mins.
13. Add red chili powder, garam masala and salt. Fry everything well until the masala smells good.
14. Add 1 ¼ cup water and mix well to make lump free gravy. You may need to adjust the amount of water slightly.
15. On a medium flame boil until the oil begins to separate and the gravy thickens. This may take about 5 mins. Check the salt and spice now. Adjust any taste that is needed. If you like to use tamarind, you can soak some tamarind in hot water. Extract and filter the juice to the gravy. We do not prefer tamarind so i have not used, the sourness from tomatoes is good enough.
16. Add the fish pieces to the gravy and cook for few mins. Flip them and cook until they bulge, meaning they are cooked completely. If desired garnish with coriander leaves.
Serve fish curry with rice or chapathi.