Sunday, March 19, 2017

Magur macher Kalia - Bengali Catfish curry

Magur mach or catfish is considered a healthy fish among Bengalees for kids and kalia is the most popular dish with this fish. Including the nutritious fish in your diet helps you meet your protein needs and boosts your intake of vitamins (B12) and healthy fats and fatty acids. This is considered even more effective when recovering after a long illness.

Preparation Time: - 15 min

Cooking Time: - 25~30 min

Servings: - 2~3 persons


  1. 3 medium sized Magur mach or Cat fish
  2. 2 medium sized potatoes
  3. 1 medium size onion chopped
  4. 1 medium sized Tomato
  5. 2 tsp Ginger Garlic paste
  6. 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  7. 1 tsp Cumin powder
  8. Salt to taste
  9. 2 green chilli slitted vertically
  10. 1 tsp Kashmiri Red Chili (optional)
  11. 5 tbsp Mustard oil (As it is an authentic Bengali dish I prefer mustard oil but you can also use any vegetable oil if you do not like the pungent smell of mustard)
  12.  1 tsp Garam Masala
  13.  1 tsp Ghee


  1. Put the catfish steaks in a bowl, rub some salt and keep it aside for 5 minutes. Now wash them thoroughly.
  2. Dry them in a strainer and marinate with turmeric powder and pinch of salt for 10 min.
  3. Chop the onion and tomato. Slit a green chilli vertically. I am preparing this dish keeping my kids in mind – hence used chillies this way. But you can remove stem and then chop finely. You can use more chillies in number also.
  4. Heat 3 tbsp oil in a non-stick kadai /pan with burner turned to high position.
  5. When heated sufficiently (smoke started coming out) shallow fry the potato in medium heat and keep aside.
  6. Use same oil to shallow fry the fish and keep aside.
  7. Now either wash the kadai or use a different kadai / frying pan to heat up rest of the oil
  8. Once heated add the chopped onion and a green chili - stir fry till they turn golden brown.
  9. Add ginger garlic paste and mix well. Fry till the raw smell goes out.
  10. Add tomato and fry till the tomatoes are all nicely mushed up and there is no raw smell. Stir continuously.
  11. Add red chili powder, turmeric powder and cumin powder. Fry till oil starts separating from the masala.
  12.  Add already fried potato and sauté for 1~2 min
  13. Pour 1 ½ cup water and add the fish.
  14. Mix and then cover it. Cook for 10~12 min.
  15. Open the lid and sprinkle garam masala on it. Cook for 2 min and stop the burner.
  16. Now pour ghee and mix it slowly such that fish pieces are not broken.
The recipe is now ready and serve this with hot streamed rice as a side dish.

As always please feel free to comment, criticize and seek if any help is required. I am all ears.