None of my visits to my home town would surpass without my special request to Mom to make this simple yet tasty curry made out of the “poor mans” fish the sardine-Mathi (sardines)Molisha(name of the gravy).
My dad used to say that there was time in Kerala when there was so much sardine laying around that they could afford to use them as fertilizer to the coconut trees.When I grew up too ,this fish was most cheap amongst all and though my sister was averse to eating it due to its strong smell I used to love this fish.
Coming for lunch from school,if the aroma coming out of the house was of this fish frying,it used to make my day.Sadly,unlike Kerala or even Bangalore,I do not get fresh Sardines here,there fore I have to make do with the Frozen Spanish Sardines I get in my super market.
Undecided on whether I should make curry or fry,I decided to go for the former since Sardines are to be full of good oils which are good for skin and hair,,frying it will only take away the good.So I decided to make Molisha ,a curry base of chilly powder and onions with Sardines.
Cleaning up frozen fish was a task,I must say.I soaked the fish in warm water for about 15mts with vinegar and turmeric(to take away the stench) and removed the head and proceeded with cleaning.The Sardines I bought were medium sized of which I could make 4 pieces each.
This is how I proceeded with the rest.
What I need:
- 3 Sardines -each cut into 4parts.
- Half a Onion Sliced.
- 1 Large tomato-sliced.
- 2″ Ginger-smashed
- 1 Green Chilly-Slit
- 3-Large Garlic pod-Smashed
- 1/4 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
- 3/4-1 tsp Chilly powder.
- 6-7 curry leaves
- Salt to taste.
How to make:
- Mix Onion,Tomato,fenugreek,garlic,ginger,chilly powder,turmeric powder in a vessel either with hand or ladle.
- Add about 1 cup water & cook for about 6-8mts till the onion start to become transparent.
- Add the sardines and salt and cook for another 15-20mts or more,till the sardines are cooked.
- Occasionally stir the curry so that the curry does not stick to bottom,add water as necessary(the curry is a semi liquid dish).
- Serve hot with rice and papad.