Prepare yummy ayala curry in a flash

This beguiling dish will pair well with almost everything, including chapati and boiled rice. Photo: Shutterstock/Santhosh Varghese

A fish curry that combines tender, flaky fish with a rich, fiery gravy makes your meal perfect. And it gets even better if it's braised in a simple sauce of red chilly (mulakittathu) and paired with steaming hot rice.

How about making the steamy, hot fish curry with ayala or Indian Mackerel, which is commonly available in our local markets? Let’s try a different way of preparation this time. This beguiling dish will pair well with almost everything, including chapati and boiled rice. Here’s how to go about it:

1 kg ayala
1 tomato
1 handful of pearl onions
Coconut oil
1 tsp mustard
½ tsp fenugreek
2 green chillies
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
¼ tsp of diced ginger
Curry leaves
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp coriander powder
½ tsp Kashmiri chilly
1 small ball of tamarind

Begin by cleaning and chopping the fish
Instead of cutting into pieces, let’s cut open the flesh inside by putting knife marks
Take a handful of pearl onions and one tomato
Heat some oil in a pan and sauté the onion and tomato for some time
Put the same in a mixer and grind well
Heat some coconut oil in a clay pan and put mustard, fenugreek, green chilli, and some finely chopped garlic into it
As it begins to turn brown, put some ginger and curry leaves along with salt and stir-fry for some more time
Add some turmeric, coriander, and Kashmiri chilli powder into it and pour in the tomato–garlic mix
Add some water and tamarind, and as the mix begins to boil, put the fish into it
Let the curry simmer and thicken through boiling
Now serve the piping hot red curry with boiled rice
The flavours will mature with time and it will even get more delicious!

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