Serving
(click to enlarge)

Fish & Potato Curry
India - Andhra
  -   Yera Chapa
Serves:
Effort:
Sched:
Do ahead:
3 main  
***
1-1/4 hr
Yes

This is a very popular dish on the east cost of India, and variously made. This is my distillation of several recipes and I'm quite happy with it. See Note-7 on method. For a similar recipe from farther north, see Fish & Mixed Vegetable Curry. This dish is re-heatable if handled carefully.



1
1
1/2
14
6
12
2
------
5
1/2
1
1/2
1/2
2/3
------
4
6
1/2
1-1/2
------
#
t
t
oz
oz
oz

---

in
t
t
t
t
---
T

t
c
---
Fish (1)
Turmeric
Salt
Potatoes (2)
Onion
Tomatoes
Chili, green (3)  
-- Spicing mix
Chili, dry (4)
Ginger root
Coriander seed
Cumin seed
Turmeric
Salt
---------
Oil
Curry Leaves (5)
Cumin seed
Water
-- Garnish
Cilantro
Prep   - :  (30 min)
  1. Cut FISH into pieces about 1-1/2 inch on a side, larger if you use carp (see Note-1). IF you will be frying the fish (see Note-7), rub with Turmeric and Salt. Set Aside.
  2. Peel POTATOES and cut into 3/4 inch cubes. Hold in cold water until needed.
  3. Peel ONION and slice into quarters lengthwise, then slice thin crosswise.
  4. Scald TOMATOES 1 minute in boiling water, quench in cold water, peel and chop medium.
  5. Split GREEN CHILIS from just under the cap to the tip. Remove seeds and veins only if you wish to control heat.
  6. Slice GINGER very thin and chop fine. pound to a paste in a mortar.
  7. Cap DRY CHILIS and break in half, dumping out as many seeds as will dump out. Grind along with Coriander and Cumin in your spice grinder. Mix all Spicing mix items.
Run   -   (45 min)
  1. Option, see Note-7 - heat 4 T Oil in a well seasoned iron skillet and fry fish over moderate heat turning once until lightly browned on both sides. Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.
  2. Measure 3 T of the Oil into a spacious sauté pan and heat over moderate flame. Stir in Curry Leaves and Cumin Seeds for about 30 seconds, then stir in Onions. Fry stirring until onions are a light golden color.
  3. Stir Spicing Mix and fry stirring until blended in, then stir in Tomatoes and fry stirring until their moisture has evaporated and the oil has started to separate.
  4. Stir in Potatoes until well incorporated, then stir in Water, bring to a boil, cover and simmer about 15 minutes.
  5. Stir in Fish and Green Chilis, bring back to a boil and continue to simmer for another 8 minutes.
  6. Adjust liquid if needed and taste for salt. Serve garnished with chopped Cilantro, along with plenty of steamed Jasmine rice.
NOTES:
  1. Fish:  .This needs to be a fish that holds together well with wet cooking. Catfish, American or Vietnamese (Swai, Basa, Tra) or Talapia work well. If you use Carp make the pieces at least 2-1/2 inches long so the spines can be dealt with.
  2. Potatoes:   Medium potatoes like White Rose work well here. See our Potato Page for details. Note that the acid in the tomatoes firms the outside of the potatoes resulting in sharp edged cubes and no thickening of the sauce.
  3. Chilis, Green:   Two Serrano split from under the cap to the tip add just enough hotness to be noticed. Feel free to use more if you like, less, or even none.
  4. Chilis, Dry:   I use Arbols, but if you want less hot use Japones. See our Chili Page for details.
  5. Curry Leaves   These fresh leaves are necessary for the true flavor of southern India, and are now reasonably available in Indian markets, at least here in California. Dried ones aren't of much use. For details see our Curry Leaves page.
  6. Bay Leaves   Some recipes call for 2 Bay Leaves in place of the Curry Leaves. This may be presuming curry leaves are not available - Andhra is far enough south to be in curry leaf territory. Of course, if you don't have them, or don't like the resinous taste, you can use Bay Leaves. While Indian Bay Leaves are not much available in North America, the closely related Mediterranean bay leaves are suitable.
  7. Method:   Indian recipes of this sort very often have you dust the fish and sometimes the potatoes lightly with a little salt and turmeric, then fry them separately until light golden. This step does provide a unique flavor but also adds complexity. It can be skipped without ruining the dish, but it's well worth the while if you can take the time.
  8. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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