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'another maacher bhaat' pan-fried Tilapia with Katarangi

This light dish is easy to cook and with minimal ingredients can be enjoyed during the sultry summers. We recommend you to use one of our special thick folk varieties, Katarangi.


For 2 servings

Ingredients

  • Tilapia fish, medium sized, around 200-250gms each, 2 (scaled, cleaned and gutted; you can keep the head like we did)
  • Rice wine vinegar, 1tbsp
  • Sesame seed oil, 1tbsp
  • Light soy sauce, 1tbsp
  • Dried red chilies, chopped roughly with the seeds, 1-2
  • Sugar, a pinch
  • Gondhoraj lebu leaves, rolled and sliced fine, 2-3
  • Spring onions, shallots, coriander leaves, chopped, combined 50 gms
  • Katarangi, 80-100gms, washed in 2-3 changes of water
  • Mustard oil, 2tbsps
  • Salt and pepper, as needed

Method

  1. Rub salt and pepper generously on the fish on both the sides. Heat a pan with the mustard oil in it.
  2. Once the oil is hot, gently place the fish away from you, turn down the heat to medium and fry for 2-3 minutes. Lift and check if the bottom-side is cooked and crisp. Turn it over and fry the other side. Be sure to crisp one side before turning it over, take your time. The whole process should not take more than 6-7 minutes. Cook the other fish in the same way.
  3. While the fish are cooking, in a small bowl, mix rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, light soy, the herbs and leaves. Stir together and check seasoning, add a pinch of sugar. Keep it aside.
  4. Prepare the rice by cooking it in enough water. It shouldn’t take more than 15-20 minutes. The rice should not ideally be mushy or sludgy, and retain some bite.
  5. To serve, divide the rice equally on two dishes or plates. Place the cooked fish on top of the rice. Spoon the herb mix on top of the fish, drizzling some of the juices from the herb mix and the remaining oil from the fried fish.
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