Manglorean Fish Gassi
A Manglorean classic this delicious fish curry is ideal for anyone who loves seafood, spice and creamy coconut milk. A soothing combination of rich flavours that compliment any fish, this curry is not only tasty but is fairly simple to put together. Feel free to use the protein of your choice and customise it to your own taste.
Serves: 4 | Prep time: 10 minutes | Marination: 2 hours | Cooking time: 30 minutes
Ingredients to Marinade the fish
- Salt - 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Ingredients for the Masala
- Coconut oil - 1 tbsp
- Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
- Cumin seeds - 2 tsp
- Peppercorns - 10 to 12
- Fennel seeds - 1 tsp (optional)
- Red chillies - 15, soaked
- Freshly grated coconut - 1 medium
- Garlic - 6 to 8 pods
- Onions - 2, sliced
Ingredients for the Main Preparation
- Coconut oil - 2 tbsp
- Onions - 2, sliced
- Curry leaves - 10 to 12
- Tomatoes - 2, diced
- Surmai pieces - 500 g
- Prepared Masala
- Salt - 2 tsp or to taste
- Coconut Milk - 150 ml
- Tamarind pulp - 2 tsp
- Bowl for marination
- Serving spoons
Marinating the fish
- Put your cleaned and washed fish pieces in a bowl. Sprinkle them liberally with salt and turmeric.
- Salt leaches out a lot of the moisture in the fish. So when the fish is put in the curry the flesh absorbs the curry flavours better. Turmeric powder disinfects the fish and removes any invisible impurities.
- The fish should marinate for at least two hours in the fridge.
Preparing the Masala
- In a saucepan heat some coconut oil. Use any other neutral oil if you do not have coconut.
- Into the hot oil add in the peppercorns, mustard, cumin and soaked red chillies. The red chillies need to be soaked for at least 30 minutes to soften them.
- When the seeds sputter add in the garlic and cook.
- Then add the freshly grated coconut. Do not use desiccated coconut for this recipe. Using fresh coconut is what gives it the signature gassi flavour.
- After a minute of roasting the coconut add in the sliced onions. To help the onions cook you can add in a small splash of water. Then cover so that the saucepan can steam up and cook everything well.
- When the onions have turned translucent and your kitchen has started to smell amazing you’re all set to blend the paste.
- To blend this paste it is best to use the chutney jar of your blender. The juice jar can also work depending on the strength of your blender. Traditionally, this masala was made in a mortar and pestle, so if you want to go old-school feel free to use some elbow grease and make it happen!
- Once your paste is smooth to your liking set it aside and move on to the final preparation.
- In a saucepan heat up some coconut oil. Into this add in the sliced onions and curry leaves.
- Give them a good stir and let them cook until the onions have become fragrant and translucent.
- Then add in the tomatoes and cover and allow them to cook until they become soft and mushy.
- Now it’s time for our gorgeous masala to go in. In in the masala and let it all come to temperature.
- You will know that the masala is ready when the fat separates and comes to the surface.
- Add some water or fish stock to thin the gravy to your liking.
- At that point place in the fish. Fish does not take too long to cook. So after initially placing them in give them a flip in about two minutes.
- Make sure everything is mixed and incorporated well.
- Cover it and let it cook on medium for about 10 minutes or until the fish is cooked through.
- When the fish is cooked add in your coconut milk and the tamarind pulp. Give it a good stir to mix it in.
- When the whole curry has simmered and come together you’re done and ready!
- Serve this with some rice, neer dosa or idiyappams.