Puthi Mach Fried (Whole Fish Fry) Small Fresh Water Fish in Tangy Fish Stew
Puti Maach Er Tok is a traditional Bengali fish curry cooked a lot during peak summertime.
The curry is cooked with small species of fish and puti maach is one of the numerous varieties. It is served along with steamed white rice and chana dal.
Where To Find Puti Maach
This dainty small freshwater fish is not easily attainable unless you stay in Assam, Kolkata or Bangladesh.
Out here, in Delhi, I purchase it from a local Bengali shop.
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They stock every species of fish that I grew up consuming. Although it is kept frozen, the fishes feel quite good.
In the area where you have rivers or ponds, you’ll get fresh one also. What a blessing!
You can always try this same curry with shrimp or any other small fish that you may choose.
Puthi Mach Fried | Frying The Tiny Lake Water Fish
When crispy fried, Puti Maach tastes amazing. The bones get crisp and so crunchy. It can make a fabulous bite when matched with a chilled beer.
As a kid, we ate it with hot steamed rice and channa daal. Maa would always save some fried Maach for me while cooking the Puti Maach Er Tok. We would walk by the kitchen and inevitably gobble a couple of them because it was so difficult to resist.
Ingredients For Puthi Mach Fried
- small/baby fish- puthi mach/boroli mach
- ginger-garlic paste (for marinade)
- juice of a lemon (for marinade)
- salt (for marinade)
- haldi (turmeric) (for marinade)
- mustard oil
Marinade For Puthi Mach Fried
- FoodAllTime Multipurpose Healthy Green Paste (for marinade)
- Juice of a lemon (for marinade)
- Haldi (turmeric) (for marinade)
- Descale the fish by rubbing it on a rough surface.
- Slit the fish on the underside and clean out the gills, intestines & stomach along with all the muck.
- Wash and marinate for 30 mins
- Heat oil and deep fry. Your Whole Fish Fry is ready.
- Eat as snacks or serve with channa dal (split chickpeas) and steamed rice
Puti Maach Er Tok | Tangy Fish Stew
Let me split the name of the dish first. Puti is a variety of small freshwater fish, Maach suggests fish in Bengali and Tok signifies tangy gravy.
➤ You Might Like To Read: Fish in Mustard Gravy: Assamese Preparation | Maccher Jhol
The choices of fish recipes that one can discover in Bengali cuisine are infinite.
Some preparations are spicy; some are mild, some are loaded with vegetables, and others are not.
What is Puti Maach Er Tok
There are also several fish curries/stews that conforms with the seasons. This humble Puti Maach Er Tok (Tangy Fish Stew) is typically cooked in peak summer months.
Assam summer is brutal, and this tangy Puti Maach Er Tok stew assists to cool down the body and keep the tummy calm.
As you can see it is not a spicy fish curry at all. It is mild, and the tangy taste is very refreshing on a warm sunny day.
Puti Maach Er Tok (Tangy Fish Stew) can be cooked in several different styles and with numerous different fishes.
Nevertheless, Maa always cooks a Tangy Fish Stew with only tiny freshwater fish. She combines the tartness using green raw mango, green tomato or tamarind.
In terms of spices, she always keeps it remarkably minimalistic. It might be bizarre for many of you witnessing the fish head but this tiny fish is cooked whole.
Ingredients For Puti Maach Er Tok
- 500 gm Puti Maach/boroli maach, tiny lake water fish
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- Mustard oil for frying the fish
- 1 tsp oil to prepare the stew
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds
- 2 tsp tamarind paste
- 3 green chilli, slit in half
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 tbsp finely chopped cilantro
Method For Puti Maach Er Tok
Put the Puti Maach in a bowl and sprinkle half of the salt and half of the turmeric powder. Please give it a massage and allow it to marinate for 30 minutes.
Stream the tamarind paste to in a separate bowl along with 1 cup of water. Mix and keep it away to be used later.
Put a non-stick pan on medium-high flame and flood oil till ½ inch level. Arrange a kitchen towel on a plate and have it ready.
Once the oil heats up, very deliberately drop the marinated fish. It will begin to sizzle and crisp up the fish—Cook for 3- 4 mins.
Take the fried fish off the pan using a slotted spoon, and put them on the kitchen towel gently.
Use a heavy bottom pan and put it on medium heat.
Pour 1 tsp of oil. When the oil heats up, carefully sprinkle the black mustard seeds (as it will splatter) along with the green chili.
Sprinkle the turmeric powder, stir it and then, pour the tamarind water mixture. Give a stir and cook for an extra minute.
Pour the taramind water and the sugar. Cook for 3 minutes. Then drop the fried fish and cook for additional 2 minutes. Check for salt and add more if you need.
Take off the heat and sprinkle some finely chopped cilantro. It’s ready to serve.
For basic tips on fish, frying check out fish in mustard gravy.
Clean the fish properly and descale it.
Best when eaten as snacks.
You can also serve it with channa dal, bitter gourd and hot steamed rice
Recipe Name: Puthi Mach Fried (Whole Fish Fry) Small Fresh Water Fish in Tangy Fish Stew
Author: Ranjeeta Nath Ghai
Description: Puti Maach Er Tok is a traditional Bengali fish curry cooked a lot during peak summertime. The curry is cooked with small species of fish and puti maach is one of the numerous varieties. It is served along with steamed white rice and chana dal.
Preperation time: 30M
Cook Time: 10M
Total Time: 40M
Type: appetizer, entree
Recipe Yield: 4 servings
Recipe Ingredients: small/baby fish- puthi mach/boroli mach, ginger-garlic paste (for marinade), juice of a lemon (for marinade), salt (for marinade), haldi (turmeric) (for marinade), mustard oil, Marinade For Puthi Mach Fried, FoodAllTime Multipurpose Healthy Green Paste (for marinade), Juice of a lemon (for marinade), Haldi (turmeric) (for marinade)
Recipe Instructions: Descale the fish by rubbing it on a rough surface. Slit the fish on the underside and clean out the gills, intestines & stomach along with all the muck. Wash and marinate for 30 mins Heat oil and deep fry. Your Whole Fish Fry is ready. Eat as snacks or serve with channa dal (split chickpeas) and steamed rice
Recipe Cuisine: Indian/Assamese
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