Monday, December 30, 2013

Madurai Meen Kuzhambu/Madurai Fish Gravy

Madurai is synonymous with non-vegetarian dishes.They make plenty of dishes with the single ingredient..My previous post on my Chala Meen Kuzhambu had been a great hit in my blog and it had hiked my page visits to a greater extent.
After a long time again I am posting a fish gravy that is prepared in a Madurai Style..This dish stays good even for 2 days and it tastes more yummier the next day of cooking..
Try this super yummy fish gravy and let me know too how it turned up :))



6-7 Nos. of Fish pieces/Small whole ones
10-12 nos of Shallots/Small onions
1 No. of medium size riped tomato
5-6 nos. of garlic  pods
1/4 Tsp of Turmeric powder
2 Tsp of Red Chilli Powder
1 and 1/2 Tsp of Coriander Powder
1 Tsp of Sambhar Powder
Salt to taste
2-3 Tbsp of Gingelly oil
1/4 Tsp of fenugreek Powder

For the Tamarind water:

Small lemon sized Tamarind
1 Cup of water
1 Tsp of Chilli powder
1 Tsp of Coriander Powder
Little salt

To grind into a smooth paste:

1/2 Tsp of Cumin Seeds/Jeera
1/2 Tsp of Whole black pepper
2-3  Nos of dry red chillies
1/2 Tsp of Coriander seeds
5 Nos. of Shallots/Small Onions
3 Nos. of garlic pods

For Seasoning:

1 Tsp of Fenugreek seeds
1/4 Tsp of Mustard seeds
1/4 Tsp of Whole urad dhal
Few Curry Leaves
1/4 Tsp of Cumin seeds
1/4 Tsp of Thalippu Vadagam


Wash the cleaned fish thoroughly to remove the bad odour.Marinate it with little salt,turmeric powder and lemon juice.If you are using fish pieces then marinate them with chilli powder,turmeric powder and salt.Refrigerate it for 1/2 an hour.

Soak tamarind in 1 Cup of water for few minutes.

Keep all the ingredients (for making the masala paste) ready.

Add a tsp of oil in a pan.
Saute the items mentioned in "To grind into a smooth paste" (Cumin,shallots,pepper,chilli,coriander seeds,garlic )
Cool them and grind it into a very smooth paste by adding little water.
Keep the masala paste aside
Squeeze the tamarind nicely  in a cup of water and make nice tangy tamarind water.Add coriander powder and chilli powder.(I used a powder which is a mixture of both).Add little salt and adjust the hotness by tasting it.
Keep the tamarind water aside.
Now we are going to prepare the gravy.
In a pan add gingelly oil.I used a mud pot for cooking the fish.It imparts a nice flavour to the dish.
After the oil gets heated add mustard seeds and urad dhal.
After the mustard seed splutters add fenugreek seeds.
Add cumin seeds and then the thalippu vadagam.

Add curry leaves and finally the garlic.
Saute them nicely.
Then add the shallots.I crushed the shallots before adding them.

After the onions gets fried well add the chopped tomatoes and saute it.
Then add chilli powder,coriander powder and sambhar powder.Saute them well in low flame.
Then add the grounded masala paste.

Saute it well.
Add the tamarind water (tamarind water mixed with chiili,coriander powder)
Mix well.Taste for salt and if required adjust the salt and chilli level.
Mix well .Close the pan with a lid and allow it to boil in low flame.

Let the gravy gets boiled till it turns little thick.
When you add fish the gravy becomes little thin again.So let the gravy be quite thick.
By this time the oil ooozes out from the egdes and the gravy would have become thick.
Now add the cleaned fish.
Cook for 3-4 minutes in low flame.Fish takes very less time to cook.
And also if you are using a mud pot, the cooking will take place even after we switch off the flame..

Finally switch off the flame and add fenugreek powder and give a stir.
Serve it with Dosa,hot steamed rice or Idly.
The gravy tastes more tastier after 5-6 hours of cooking


  • You can use anytype of fishes like snapper (Sankara),Butterfish (Viral),Catfish (Keluthi),Sala Meen,Tilapia (Nei Meen) etc.
  • If you are using a little big pieces of fish then marinate the fish with little turmeric powder,chilli powder and salt for atleast 1/2 an hour in the refrigerator before cooking the gravy.
  • Wash the fish nicely in the running water to remove the bad odour.After washing apply some turmeric powder,lemon juice and salt and then preserve it.
  • The addition of Thalippu Vadagam imparts a lovely odour and taste to the gravy.
  • Grind the masala paste very smoothly.
  • Don't use coconut for this gravy.This will spoil the taste.I will be posting fish curry using coconut shortly..
  • You can also add brinjal or Lady's finger too along with the fish
For my another version of Fish Kuzhambu:


  1. Mouthwatering curry and i love to have it with rice.

  2. I can get the smell of your fish curry till here. so flavourful curry.