Monday, January 21, 2008

Fiery Tales : Moluttathu with kappa

Thankfully, recreating the tastes of home doesn't always mean hours spent in the kitchen chopping, slicing, stirring and watching over the pot. This fish curry, endearingly called Moluttathu or Moliyar ( molaku meaning chilly) around Malabar region is so easy to make and such a tease for your tongue that it is a daily fare in most of the homes around the region. A yellow coconut based curry, a red moluttathu, two or three sides of colorful vegetables, our lunches back home always have been colorful.This curry can be made with a wide variety of fish, but smaller fish like sardine, mackeral, silver belly fish are more commonly used.

Ingredients :

Half an onion , sliced
One tomato, sliced
An inch piece of ginger, crushed
One or two cloves of garlic, crushed
One green chilli, slit length wise
Two teaspoons chilli powder
Half teaspoon turmeric powder
A pinch of powdered fennel seeds
fish of your choice
juice of a lemon sized piece of tamarind

Simply put together all these, except the fish and the tamarind juice in a sauce pan or pot , mix it up nicely with your hand giving it a squeeze or two, pour the tamarind juice and bring it to a boil. Add the fish pieces, reduce the heat to medium, cover and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Make a tadka of fenugreek seeds, one or two small red onions sliced and curry leaves, and pour it over the curry. That's it, no grinding, no sauteing, no stirring. Enjoy the curry with a rice-dal combination, or with kappa.

Today we had mullan moluttathu and kappa for lunch. Mullan (silver belly fish)being a small bony fish, you actually spend more time picking up the delicate flesh from the bones and eating the dish than cooking the curry; perfect for a day when you don't want to spend too much of your time and energy in the kitchen and yet want a nostalgia inducing meal.

Mullan or Silver belly fish

A fiery fish curry and kappa, my entry for RCI: cuisine of kerala event.


shades said...

i make it with a slight difference... instead of tamarind we add 'kudam puli' (garcinia cambogea)

Shilpa said...

Reshma, is this fish available here in US? whats it called here? I love the fish curry in that vessel. I want to give it a try.

Gini said...

What says RCI-Kerala better than fish and kappa, right?

Reshma said...

Shades, am a bog fan of fish curry with kudam puli. wonder why it isn't so popular in north kerala?

Shilpa, we got this fish from the local indian store. The packet says" silver belly fish". I didn't find much information when I searched online.

Gini:) are we type casting kerala food now?:)

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