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Monday, August 5, 2013

Pabda Maacher Shorshe Jhal (Fish in Mustard Sauce)

Ok so I did something crazy during my last trip to Bangalore...Deprived of good quality river fishes in Chennai I took the opportunity to buy fishes in a large amount, stored and packed in a thermocol box with dried ice and came by road journey ! Since then I am on fish diet :-) 

This particular mustard paste Pabda fish gravy is not at all for faint hearted ! Be prepared to keep a tissue as you may have runny nose while eating !! But its certainly worth experimenting this dish if so far you have not tasted it ! Once you get hold of Ilish maach( the season is round the corner) you may try Ilish Maacher Jhal. And for Chicken lovers I already posted Shorshe Murgi.

3-4 Pabda pieces, scales removed, washed
4 tbsp Mustard seeds
2 tbsp Vinegar 
3-4 Green chillies, hotter the better
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder + a big pinch for marinade fishes
A pinch of Onion seeds
3-4 tbsp grated Coconut (optional) Note: I didn't add this time
3 tbsp Mustard oil, strictly mustard oil as no other oil will do justice to this dish
1/2 Water
Salt to taste

First of all soak mustard seeds and vinegar in a small bowl in warm water for about an hour. Marinate fish pieces with some salt, turmeric and red chilly powder. Keep aside for 15 minutes.

Traditionally grinding mustard seeds is done on Sheel Nora, a basic Kitchen Aid at Bengali Kitchen but in most kitchens it has been replaced by coffee grinder tool, which works fine. Add very little water in the grinder along with green chillies and pinch of salt. This paste is called Shorshe Bata: Shorshe means Mustard and Bata means ground into a paste. Keep aside.

Heat mustard oil in a flat pan and fry fish pieces one at a time on low flame till light brown. Pabda fish is basically very tender fish so fry carefully. Now add water into the mustard paste ans add turmeric and chilly powder. Mix well. In the same pan add onion seeds and few green chillies into the hot oil and when the seeds splutters add mustard paste. Cover the pan for 2-3 minutes and then add fried fishes. Simmer for 3-4 minutes. Remove and serve with plain rice. 


  • Vinegar is used to reduce the bitterness.
  • If you cook mustard paste in the hot pan for too long it will turn out bitter !

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  1. Looks so yummy and mouthwatering fish curry.

  2. I've had this fish curry at a bengali friends house. Its tastes so unique and yummy. A fish diet sounds very healthy :-)

  3. Fish in mustard curry seems very nice. One day I should try this....looks very yummy!

  4. Looks yummm, but never had this before.

  5. liked your presentation deepa.. will give a try to this curry..

  6. Mouthwatering fish curry,gravy is very tempting.

  7. whole fish curry with mustard...yumm

  8. my gosh..fell in luv vth cliks..really luking jst hot

  9. Call me over for a fish feast when I come over!

  10. Actually na by cooking all this dishes you are making me crazy... I just started my kitchen in UK still need to set many things after seeing this I'm just not able to control... I need mixer now..

  11. Never cooked whole fish like this, makes me drool...

  12. Love fish in mustard have cooked fish in a perfect way. Looks very delicious.

  13. Hmmm....that's a fishy post...I know your love for fish...recipe sounds really droolicious...

  14. Wow...looks so beautifully placed and plated....

  15. This is beautifully cooked and served.
    I feel the taste.

  16. Deepa, that's an absolutely delish curry :) Where in B'lore did you buy the fish from? We stay there. :)

  17. Deepa, delicious mustard rich fish curry. I seen in a show where they are making this one.

  18. This sounds wonderful, delicious & different fish curry!

  19. lovely colored jhal...will go so well with rice
    this will make for a perfectly relaxed weekend lunch

  20. Looks absolutely delicious... Yummmmmyyy..!!!

  21. This gravy looks simply killer!! Truly liked...:)

  22. A beautifully presented recipe. Thanks for the effort of putting this up.

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