Across large swathes of Bengal, Odisha and Assam, people in rural areas had no refrigerators for decades; even if they did, it would be of no use since there was no electricity. Even today, because of widespread rural poverty, there are very few refrigerators in villages; this means cooked food cannot be stored for consumption at a later point in time.
For this reason, the fish that these rural folks caught every day would have to be cooked and eaten almost immediately. This gave rise to some supersonic recipes that are very useful in our present-day on-the-run lives. Here’s an exciting fish recipe that can be prepared in minutes.
The ingredients that you will require are:
Fish (Hilsa): 500 gram
Mustard Oil: 4 tablespoon
Mustard Seeds (Rai): 1 tablespoon
Turmeric (Haldi) Powder: 1 teaspoon
Green Chillies: 6
Salt: to taste
It’s a simple set of common everyday ingredients found in every rural household. When you have to cook in a hurry, there’s no time to go shopping!
Wash and cut the fish into pieces. Smear each piece with turmeric powder and salt. Keep aside.
Coarsely grind the mustard seeds and two of the green chillies into a paste. Add a pinch of salt and mix it into the paste. Keep aside.
Vertically slit the remaining four green chillies and keep aside.
In a pan heat around 200 millilitres of water on a Medium flame and bring the water to a boil. Then add the fish pieces along with the mustard-green chilli paste. Some housewives prefer to coat the fish pieces in the mustard-green chilli paste – but that is not necessary because it doesn’t affect the taste of the dish.
Cover the pan and continue cooking till the water evaporates.
Next, add the Mustard Oil and the slit green chillies. Give it a stir, turn the flame off – and it’s done! Don’t miss this interesting fact: in this recipe, Mustard Oil is not used as a cooking medium. Instead it is added to enhance the taste of the dish.
In Bengal, Odisha and Assam, this dish is usually eaten with steaming hot rice. It’s quick, it’s easy and it’s delicious!