Saturday, October 27, 2012

Microwave Paturi - For the City Dwellers


Have you tried the Bengali parceled fish, the Paturi yet?

The mustardy and juicy meat gently trapped inside a banana leaf, is divine….  I was craving for a comfort food to get over the post-holiday lull. It’s almost irritating when the flavors call your name while you are already recuperating from the post festival frenzy.   Last night I slept thinking about the food?…. Of course, the morning sun saw me standing in the fish market with my mom and shopping bag in hand!

We were lucky to get a fresh Hilsa. The banana leaf eluded us this time. Durga Puja seems to have eaten into the limited banana leaf stock of my Northy Indian state.. So microwave became my only source of hope. Nevertheless, I have to admit that I was disappointed.

For all you lesser mortals who plan to cook, without the banana leaf at hand – let me assure you that the humble homely microwave promises the same (well almost) taste as its banana leaf wrapped steamed and pan fried cousin, only the romance of unwrapping is lost. In any case we city dwellers outside of Bengal have to settle in for the former – much easier version.

So, come on Ilish/Hilsa Fish of Bangladesh on my plate!  Let’s devour you.

Let’s prepare the Ilish Maacher Paturi

Ingredients

5-6 pieces of Ilish
1 tsp turmeric powder (+ ½ tsp turmeric)
5 tsps yellow mustard seeds
1 tbsp posto/poppy seeds
21/2 tbsp plain yogurt
Green chilies to taste(more the merrier)
6 tbsp  mustard oil
Salt

Make a smooth paste of the poppy seeds, mustard seeds, half teaspoon turmeric powder and few green chilies. It’s best to dry grind and gradually add water before the green chilies, to get the smooth consistency.
I use a microwaveable pie dish for this preparation.

Start with arranging the fish.

Coat the fishes with the half of the spice mixture, and being generous is the trick. I find hand the best bet. Now  whip the yogurt with salt and add on top. Top it with the remaining green chilies. Add the remaining spice mixture. Top the fish pieces up with a teaspoon of turmeric Now add salt  and drizzle the mustard oil. Mustard is what creates the magic in the recipe. Ensure that all is covered nicely.

Cling wrap the microwaveable pie dish and keep for at least 10 minutes. Microwave on high power for atleast  10 minutes.

Serve with steaming plain white rice. Bon appetit!

Sending this event to Anu's Healthy Kitchen 
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