Chettinad Fish Curry

Want to know how to make a delicious Chettinad Fish curry? Learn it from the Chef himself!
Here we have our friend Chef P, in our virtual kitchen, who is going to share some famous, some restaurant style and some secret recipes with us, in coming weeks !  So stay tuned, friends!!!!!

INGREDIENTS for Chettinad Fish Curry:

  • Fish – 5 to 6 pieces(I used Vanjaram fish variety)
  • Tamarind – lemon sized
  • Turmeric powder – a generous pinch
  • Coriander leaves – 1 tsp
  • Salt- to taste


  • Oil – 1.5 tbsp
  • Vadagam (the sun dried seasoning mix, used for tempering) / Vendhayam – 1 tsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Small Onion – 10
  • Garlic – 5 pearls
  • Tomato – 1
  • Curry leaves – few


  • Coconut – 1/4 cup
  • Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
  • Chilli powder – 1.5 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 1.5 tsp


  • Oil – 1/2 tsp
  • Tomato – 1 chopped roughly
  • Big Onion – 1 chopped roughly

1. Grind/blend all the ingredients listed under “To grind”  (coconut, fennel seeds , chilli powder, coriander powder) in a mixer. Heat 1/2 tsp of oil in a kadai – add onion , saute till slightly browned then add tomatoes, saute until raw smell leaves and mixture becomes mushy. Add the browned onion and tomato to the ingredients in the mixer, sprinkle little water and grind it to a fine paste.
2.Soak tamarind in warm water (say 1/4 cup), extract pulp and keep aside. Heat remaining oil in the kadai add mustard seeds, allow it to splutter. Then add curry leaves, onion, garlic saute for 3mins then add tomatoes and saute until raw smell leaves. Then add the grind-ed paste, turmeric powder and tamarind pulp. Add 1/4 cup water (adjust according to the required consistency) , add salt as per taste and allow it to boil for 15-20mins.
3.When oil separates out, add the cleaned fish pieces. Allow it to boil and the fish to cook well. The fish will cook faster so be careful not to break the pieces. Once the fish turns soft and the curry is well boiled and thick, oil will start collecting at the edges. At this stage garnish with coriander leaves and switch off.
4. Give resting time for at least an hour before you serve. Serve hot with tastes heavenly! Tastes better on the next day, or maybe, next to the next day  🙂


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