Next week school reopens in my part of the world. After 2 and a half months of late nights, later mornings, lazy breakfasts, no school lunches, no worries of homework, unlimited story book reading time and any hour ice cream time, letting go of summer vacation is not going to be easy.
For anyone.Okay, at least not for me.
|Sauteeing Onions to grind into a paste|
|Tempering oil with Whole spices|
I think they had a good summer, kind of like those I had,only with air-conditioning. Listless, long, timeless.
|Add the onion paste|
And now here we are, with school starting on Monday. The prospect of two school buses at my doorstep for the two sisters, wrenching my gut. Darn, I am hitting menopause or what.
The supplies have been bought and labeled by BigSis. The bags have been packed. This is always an exciting part of a new school year though in this case there are no new text books involved. Supplies largely consist of Sharpies, Folders, glue sticks, pens in certain colors, post-its and index cards. For LS it is glue sticks, crayons, glue sticks, color pencils, more glue sticks and did I say glue sticks ? I have no idea what they do in Kindergarten but it sure involves a lot of glue sticks.
|Add fish and sprinkle kashmiri mirch|
|In goes tomatoes and green chillies|
|The yogurt which was mixed with half of onion paste, ginger paste, sugar and mixed thoroughly|
It is the folders, pencils and binders which excite her more. And then there are the glue sticks for LS. All six of them.
|Add water and let gravy simmer|
Before I go onto the recipe, I must tell you about this wonderful event where my book is a part of the giveaway. It is hosted by Srivalli of the wonderful blog "Cooking 4 all Seasons". You can participate and try to win a copy.
My book is now also available for UK/Europe/Canada on Amazon at the Amazon.uk, Amazon.ca etc. And it is always there on Amazon and Flipkart. If you have read my book, I would also urge you to rate and review it at these sites as well as on Goodreads. It will be a huge help.
Soon, I will be having a couple of giveaways on my blog too. So stay tuned.
Now to Doi Machh i.e Fish in a yogurt gravy features in my list of favorite dishes. Surprisingly this simple dish varies from one Bengali home to the other in the little nuances they add. My Ma’s Doi Maachh is pretty much traditional with raw onion paste, ginger paste and yogurt in the gravy and that awesome taste is what I grew up with. Then, when I saw my Ma-in-law add chopped tomatoes to this gravy, towards the end of cooking, I was taken by surprise. But her dish tasted just like Doi Maachh and yet was unique with this touch.
When it was my turn, I went further. Instead of a raw onion paste, I started sautéeing the onion lightly and grinding them to a paste which I then used in the gravy. I was trying to shorten the time it takes to “kashao” raw onion paste. Simple. In my book, I have a version of Doi Maachh where I have added even more twists and turns.
|Tastes best with some rice|
Though traditionally done with fish like Rohu or Carp, I find salmon perfect in this sweet and spicy yogurt gravy. Today, I will share with you my version of Salmon diye Doi Maachh, where the salmon is poached in the gravy and the taste is so darn awesome that my daughters lick it up.
And I am sure you will love this too.
Heat Vegetable Oil in a frying pan
Chop a medium sized onion in large chunks and then saute it until it is soft, pink and translucent. Now cool and make a paste.
Next in a bowl, add about 1/2 cup of thick yogurt. To it add
1/2 of the onion paste
1 tbsp of fresh ginger paste
a pinch of turmeric powder
1/4th tsp of sugar
1/4th cup of water
Clean the fish pieces and lightly rub with salt and turmeric. Keep aside for half an hour. For salmon, I request the fishmonger to get the skin off the filet and then cut the filet into kabob sized pieces.
Heat some more Oil in Kadai/Frying Pan.
Add the coarsely pounded whole garam masala
Elaichi or Cardamom~ 5
Laung or Cloves~ 5
TejPata or BayLeaves~ 2
Dalchini or Cinnamon Sticks ~ 1” stick
When they start sputtering add the remaining onion paste. Add about 1 tsp of sugar and fry the onion paste till the oil separates.
Add the fish pieces. Sprinkle 1/2 tsp of Kashmiri mirch and saute until the fish pieces lose their raw color. Don't overcook or fry the fish too much. It will cook in the gravy
Next add half of a large tomato chopped into small pieces and about 5 slit green chillies. You can also add halved grape tomatoes.
Now take the Kadai/Frying Pan off the heat and give it a couple of minutes to cool.
Add the beaten yogurt/curd and mix with the fish. If you add the yogurt directly when the utensil is on heat the yogurt may curdle so you need to do this.
Put back the Kadai/Frying Pan on heat.
Add salt as required .Add about 1/2 - 2/3 cup of water at this point. depending on how much gravy you need, you might need more or less water.
Simmer on low heat till the gravy comes to a boil. Let it simmer till the gravy is thick and smooth and the fish is just flaking apart. The texture of the gravy should be silky smooth because of all that yogurt. Note: the gravy will not dry off totally but will be thick and not watery
Finish off with a little ghee if you wish and a little Garam masala powder. Serve with white rice.