Saturday, March 19, 2016

Chingri Macher Kalia - Bengali Prawn Curry

Since long time I was pondering over the idea of a prawn preparation. There are so many ways Prawn or Chingri as in Bengali can be cooked. Generally kalia is a way Bengalis cook, which can be prepared with fish, meat or vegetables with a sauce usually based on onion and ginger paste and with a touch of Bengali Garam masala powder. Chingri macher kalia is a traditional Bengali dish which is still very popular among everyone in Bengal. Hope my recipe here will make someone’s taste buds happy.

Preparation Time: - 15 min

Cooking Time: - 35~40 min

Servings: - 3~4 persons (depends upon how many pieces per person)


  1. 12~14 extra large prawns. I did not buy the normal prawn from market, but purchased frozen prawn from IFB.
  2. 2 large potato cubed
  3. 1 large onion finely chopped
  4. 1 tbsp ginger grinded (you can use ginger paste also)
  5. 1 tbsp garlic paste
  6. 2 tsp cumin powder
  7. 2 green chili silted
  8. 2 tsp Kashmiri Mirch ( you can have more if you are spice lover)
  9. 1 large tomato chopped
  10. 4 tsp turmeric powder
  11. 2 Cardamom
  12. 1 inch cinnamon stick
  13. 2 bay leaves
  14. 2 cloves
  15. 1 ½ tbsp ghee
  16. 7 ~8 tbsp Mustard oil ( I used mustard oil fully as Bengalis like the aroma but you can mix vegetable oil in :40:60 ratio if you do not like the smell of mustard oil )
  17. 1 tsp garam masala powder
  18. Sugar to taste
  19. Salt to taste
  20. Few coriander leaves chopped for garnishing 
  21. Handful of peas (optional). I use fresh peas in winter but today I did not put it.


  1. If you have purchased from the usual fish market then first remove the shell, remove the central vein of the prawn and thoroughly clean. In my case I used the frozen IFB extra large prawns which are already peeled and deveined.
  2. Rub 2 tsp turmeric powder to the prawns and keep for 10 minutes. 
  3. Heat 3 tbsp oil in kadai or non-stick pan. Fry the potatoes with little bit of turmeric powder and salt till they turn golden brown. Keep aside.
  4. Add 1 tbsp more oil and shallow fry the prawn in same kadai. Please note that the prawn should not be over fried at this stage as that will make them harder.

  5. Use a separate kadai and heat 1 tbsp ghee plus the remaining oil.
  6. Now add the cloves, cinnamon, cardamoms, and bay leaves. These spices add a nice smell to the whole preparation.
  7. Sauté for couple of minutes.
  8. Add 1 tsp sugar or as per your taste and let it caramelizes. If you have any issue with sugar you can skip it.
  9. Now add the chopped onions. The caramelized sugar brings a nice colour to the onions.
  10. Stir occasionally till the onions turn golden brown.
  11. Add ginger to the mix and sauté for a min.
  12. Now add garlic paste and cook for a few seconds.
  13. Now introduce all the chilies (green and Kashmiri mirch). You can decide the amount as per your taste.
  14. Add cumin powder and rest of turmeric powder.
  15. Stir for a couple of minutes and add tomatoes, sugar and salt as per your taste.
  16. Continue stirring till tomatoes turn pulpy and oil separates from masala.
  17. Add about 1 cup of warm water here and pour the potatoes.
  18. Boil the potatoes in medium flame while lid is closed till they are well done. You may need to add more water if the potatoes are taking time to boil.
  19. Now add the prawns one by one. Cook till they are properly boiled. Do not over cook as that may make the prawns harder.
  20. Add ½ tbsp Ghee and garam masala. Mix it well and cook for one minute. Now add the chopped coriander leaves for garnishing.
  21. Switch off the flame and your delicious Chingri preparation is ready to serve.
Serve this hot with Basmati or any fine rice or fried rice. I personally like it with Basanti Pulao. I plan to give the recipe of the same some day.
As always please feel free to comment, criticize and seek if any help is required. I am all ears.

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