Fish Masala Rice (not Biriyani)

Ingredients :-

For the rice

  1. Basmathi Rice –2 cups
  2. Bayleaf – 2
  3. Cinnamon – 1” piece
  4. Cloves – 4 no.s
  5. Cardamom – 4 no.s
  6. Mace / jathipatri- 4 small pieces
  7. Coconut oil –2 tbsps.
  8. Salt – 2 tsps.
  9. Boiling water – 4 cups
  10. Garam masala powder – 1/2 tsp.

For the Fish masala

  1. Fleshy fish ( preferably King fish) – 1/2 kg.
  2. Coconut oil – 2 tbsps.
  3. Thinly Sliced Onion-2 cups
  4. Greenchilly – 2 numbers, finely chopped
  5. Ginger – 1 tbsp, finely chopped
  6. Garlic – 1 tbsp., finely chopped
  7. Coriander powder – 1 tsp.(heaped)
  8. Pepper powder – 1 tsp.(heaped)
  9. Red chilly powder – 1 tsp.(heaped)
  10. Sliced Tomato – 2 tbsps. (heaping)
  11. Chopped carrot – 2 tbsps. (heaping)
  12. Chopped capsicum – 2 tbsps. (heaping)
  13. Curryleaves – 1/3 cup
  14. Boiling water – 3/4 cup
  15. Thick coconut milk – 1 cup
  16. Chopped cilantro – 1/2 cup
  17. Chopped mint – 1/2 cup
  18. Salt – as reqd

For Marinating Fish

  1. Red chilly powder – 1 tbsp.
  2. Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  3. Ginger Garlic paste – 1 tbsp.
  4. Salt – 3/4 tsp – 1 tsp
  5. Lime juice – 1 tsp.

For layering:-

  1. Chopped cilantro – 1/4 cup
  2. Chopped mint – 1/4 cup
  3. Curryleaf – 2 tbsps.
  4. Thinly sliced onions – 1 cup
  5. Oil for deep-frying the onions

Method:-

For the Fish masala

  1. Remove the bones & skin of the fish. Wash well & cut into cubes. Immerse in water mixed with lemon juice for 10 minutes. Pat the fish pieces dry. Mix together the ingredients for marinating fish. Marinate the fish pieces and allow it to stand for half an hour at room temperature. Fry the fish pieces till 3/4th done.
  2. Heat oil in a broad non-stick pan and add the onions, ginger, garlic and greenchilly. Fry  till the onions turn golden brown in colour.
  3. Add coriander powder, pepper powder, garam masala powder, red chilly powder, turmeric powder and sauté for a minute in low heat.
  4. Stir in the chopped tomato, carrot and capsicum. Stir till oil starts to separate and tomato turns mushy. Add the curryleaves, 3/4 cup of boiling water and 1 cup of thick coconut milk.
  5. Bring the mixture to a rolling boil & carefully slide in the fish pieces. Cook till the gravy turns thick and coats the fish pieces.
  6. Add the chopped cilantro and mint leaves & mix.

For the fragrant rice

  1. Wash and drain the rice well. Soak it in water for 30 minutes. Heat coconut oil and add all the spices.
  2. When fragrant add the rice and fry till opaque. Add 4 cups boiling water, 1/2 tsp. of garam masala powder and 2 tsps. of salt into it.
  3. Bring to a second boil, lower heat and cover cook rice till soft and all the water is absorbed. Let it stand undisturbed for 10 more mins.

For the layering

  1. Heat oil in a frying pan and deep fry 1 cup of sliced onions on medium heat till golden brown and crisp. Drain on paper towels. Set aside.
  2. Take a dum pot  and smear it with ghee, add half the cooked rice. Sprinkle half of the fried onions and chopped herbs over the rice.
  3. Put the fish pieces and gravy over the rice, followed by the remaining rice & the remaining chopped mint-cilantro, fried onions.
  4. Cook on very low heat for 15 minutes.
  5. Keep it undisturbed for 30 minutes.
  6. Serve this rice layer by layer.
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