Saturday, November 27
06:51 PM

Dried fish delicacies

23 Feb 2021

Dried fish, they say, is meant for a rainy day. They come in handy when you need to quickly stray away from a vegetarian diet yet have no time to replenish your refrigerator with proteins. Also, during a lockdown, when you don’t want to step outdoors, store up some dried fish and enjoy unique recipes  full of zing!


Dried Shrimp Chutney 



1 cup medium dried shrimp

½ cup grated coconut

1tsp minced ginger

5-6 dried red chillies

2tsp minced garlic

1 lemon sized ball of tamarind

Salt – to taste



Pinch out the heads of the dried shrimps and toast them on a hot plate until you get a nice roasted shrimp aroma. Remove them when crisp but not burnt. On the same hot plate, dry roast the red chillies for 1-2 minutes and remove. Then roast the coconut, ginger and garlic for 1-2 minutes and remove. Now coarsely grind all ingredients with salt to taste (½tsp). The ground mixture should not be a fine paste, though it will bind together because of the tamarind. A few drops of water can be added to move the mixture while grinding. A few bits of shrimp in the ground mixture are fine. Serve as a side dish with rice and dal.




Dried Fish Curry




2-3 small dried mackerels or dried flat fish

1 cup chopped tomatoes

1 onion – sliced

2tsp ginger-garlic paste

2tsp tamarind paste/pulp

1tsp red chilli powder

½tsp turmeric powder

1tsp coriander powder

½tsp cumin powder

2 green chillies

1 sprig curry leaves

2tbsp oil

Salt – to taste



Wash the dried fish well to remove excess salt and cut to pieces. Heat oil in a non-stick sauce pan and fry the fish pieces till they turn golden brown. Remove and set aside. In the same hot oil, add the curry leaves and onion and fry for a minute. Then add the ginger garlic paste and fry for a minute. Add the tomatoes, all the spice powders, the tamarind paste and mix well. Cover and cook on low flame for 4-5 minutes until oil begins to separate. Then add half cup water and simmer for 3-4 minutes. Finally, add the fried pieces of fish and turn off the flame. Serve with steamed rice.

Noe: This recipe is ideal for dried mackerels but can be prepared with any available dried fish.

Dried Sardines Fry


8-10 dried sardines or any slim dried fish

1tsp red chilli powder

1tsp turmeric powder

Juice of half a lemon

1 onion –  sliced

2 sprigs curry leaves

2tbsp oil 

Salt – to taste



Soak the dried fish in water for 20 minutes. Clean and remove the excess salt and dirst from the insides. Season with chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt, lemon juice. Now, heat oil and add in the fish. Fry it for 5 minutes on both sides until golden brown. Remove them to a plate. In the remaining oil, add in onions, curry leaves and saute for a minute. Add 1tbsp lemon juice and mix well. Spoon this over the fried fish and serve hot with rice.


Dried Shark Fry


200g dried shark chunks

2tsp red chilli powder

1tsp turmeric powder

1tsp ginger-garlic paste

½tsp salt

2tsp vinegar

2tbsp oil


Soak the shark pieces in water for 30 minutes to get rid of excess salt and to soften the chunks. Mix the spices with salt, vinegar and ginger garlic paste to form a smooth paste. Marinate the shark chunks with this paste and set aside for 30 minutes to one hour. Then, heat oil in a pan and fry the shark chunks on medium flame until they get well browned on all sides. Serve with onion rings as a snack or with a meal.


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