Fish is the best source of Omega-3 fatty acids and important nutrients like Vit.D, minerals and proteins. There are many variations to prepare a Kerala Style Fish Curry. Fish curries in Kerala are cooked in an earthern clay pot which tastes best and is healthy too. Today, I am sharing a delicious Kerala Style Fish Curry using brindleberry [gambooge/malabar tamarind (kodumpuli)] and coconut milk. Smoky, sour flavour of brindleberry along with the spice powders and warmth of the coconut milk makes this tasty delicacy truly unique and divine. Enjoyed best with some hot steamed rice.


Prep time : 15 mins, Cooking time : 10 mins, Cuisine : Kerala (Indian)


1 kg Fish (cut, cleaned & drained)

1 medium sized onion sliced
1“ ginger sliced
4 garlic cloves sliced
3-4 green chillies slit

½ tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp chilly powder/cayenne
1½ tbspn kashmiri chilli powder/paprika
1 tbspn coriander powder
¼ tspn fenugreek powder
(make a smooth paste of the above powders, adding little water and keep it aside)

¾ cup – 1st extract of coconut milk (thick)
½ cup – 2nd extract of coconut milk (diluted in water)

2-3 pieces of brindleberry (rinsed & soaked in little warm water for 10 mins)

coconut oil
few curry leaves


Take a claypot or a deep bottom pan. Tip in oil. Let the oil heat up. Reduce heat and throw in few curry leaves, once it crackles, add green chillies, ginger, garlic and onions. Stir for sometime. When the onion turns golden brown, add the masala powder paste. Saute and cook till oil starts releasing from the edges, without burning the masalas.

At this stage, add brindleberry, salt and 2nd extract coconut milk; bring it to boil. Reduce heat and gently add the fish pieces. Cover and cook till done (it will take 15 mins or so).

Once the fish is cooked, tip in the 1st extract coconut milk, topped with little coconut oil. Swirl and do a taste test; adjust salt accordingly. Switch off heat.

Give the curry resting period so that all the spices are steeped into the fish. Enjoy!!!

My observations/notes:
once the fish is added, do not stir. swirl the pan
can use any fish of your choice. I have used mackerel for this preparation
can use store bought coconut milk
can use raw mango or ripe red tomatoes instead of brindleberry
can use shallots instead of onions
can customize the spice level as per your preferences
remember to spoon out the brindleberry in case you feel the sourness is more
the curry tastes best after few hours of preparing or even tastier the next day.
use fresh fish for this preparation
wash fish well; rubbing it with rock-salt to remove any fish odour.
can use serrano peppers instead of green chillies


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