Meen Arappu Roast - Fish Roast in Coconut Milk and Masalas

Despite being a Keralite, I am ashamed that I have hardly featured any fish recipes on my blog. What a shame, right??? Apart from the Koonthal Roast I posted some time back, I have not posted any fish recipe after then. Why? Umma fries fish every single afternoon, except Fridays and fish curry features on our table at least once a week. The only thing is that I am never there to eat it as I would be in the office!!! We hardly cook fish for dinner, so that leaves no scope of me experimenting on fish. Now this happened, when umma was back home and my D's customer bought us a huge king-fish, which was his catch of the day, nicely cut into big pieces. I was not really willing to put it into the fridge without making anything fresh out of it. So 6 pieces remained out on the slab and the remaining went into the fridge. 

As usual, I pushed my hand into my cupboard aisle with all my cookbooks - I am still surprised how my big fat hand went in!!! - and I pulled out my latest addition to my collection, "The Suriani Kitchen" by Lathika George, which I had bought at the recent Sharjah Book Fair. I had eyed this book last year, but since I had exceeded by budget, I postponed it for this time but this year, only the Malayalam version was available, to my dismay. It's not that I cannot read or write Malayalam, I can very well do that, having studied it as my second language at school till my 12th grade, however years of negligible reading has made me really rusty. Still, I had no patience to wait for next time or go hunting for the English version outside. I just went ahead and bought the book. So with the king-fish in tow, I searched the black and white pages of the book and zeroed on this recipe, that I am sharing with you. 

What should I say? As soon as the king fish got cooked, I opened the lid and the whole kitchen smelt yummy!!! But I was upset that it looked more soupy than "roasty". I went back to the book and read the instruction again - ah, keep it closed for 15 minutes! Did that and then what I got was the masala all coated on the fish!!! I served these with chapathi and they were wiped out! Even though I don't eat dinner, I was so tempted by the smell that I ended up cleaning the masala in the pan with a slice of brown bread and I was floating in bliss!!! Hehe...

Meen Arappu Roast/ Fish Roast in Coconut Milk and Masalas
Serves 4-6
Recipe coutesy: Suriani Kitchen by Lathika George


6 thick pcs king-fish, cleaned and drained
2 tbsp coconut oil
2 large onions, sliced
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp Kashmir red chilli powder
1/2 tsp pepper powder
1 tbsp vinegar
Salt to taste
1 cup thick coconut milk
Curry leaves for garnish


Heat coconut oil in a large frying pan, which will fit all the fish at one go. Add the onions and saute till soft. You don't need to brown the onion as such, it has to just be wilted. Then add in the ginger and garlic pastes and cook till the raw smell is gone. Add in the powders from turmeric to pepper and saute for a couple of minutes. Now add in the vinegar and salt and give a good mix. 

Spread the fish on top of this masala, slowly mix using your wooden spoon just to quote the masalas. Pour the coconut milk on top, keep the flame on medium low and cook closed till the fish is cooked well. It is not necessary to flip the fish, but if you are doubtful, then you may do it. Switch off the flame, sprinkle in the curry leaves. Close back the lid and keep it undisturbed for around 15 minutes. 

Open the lid, give one final mix, adjust the salt and serve!!! One of the best fish curries I have ever had in recent times...

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