Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Easy Tomato Fish ( Fish in Spicy Tomato Sauce )

 I am back with a simple fish curry and I would like to call this dish “No Fuss Tomato Fish”.  The name says it all; it is entirely a beginner's recipe which needs few ingredients and takes no time. It would be most useful dish for working couple. When you are exhausted after day’s work and feeling lazy but your mind wants something tasty and flavorful, this fish curry recipe is perfect for those evenings. It takes hardly 15 to 20 minutes to prepare this dish and it would be perfect combination with a bowl of steamed rice on a regular lunch or dinner.

Common River fishes like Asian Sea Bass (Bhetki) is perfect for this recipe. I generally used Tilapia, Bass or Halibut to make this dish. Tomato Fish is nothing but only fish cooked in flavorful and spicy tomato sauce. You have to follow very few steps. First marinate the fish for a short time and then pan fried them. And then you have to just add the fish pieces to the tomato sauce, bring it to a simmer and until every thing is well cooked. I am very thankful to Devlina di for this recipe; she is one of my best friends in San Diego and I learnt several dishes from her. Her recipe is always quick and simple but tasty.

Off late my husband has become my best critic when it comes to food photography. Last couple of times I was simply showing him my pictures before I posted them in the blog. He didn't like any because it seems lighting was not good. :-)  Initially I got annoyed thinking he doesn't know much about photography anyway, later realized he was right. I had retaken the pics with more brightness and it came out much better. Sometimes we need this kind of feedback which helps us to improve and so will always appreciate your input.  

Recipe of Tomato Fish ( Fish in Spicy Tomato Sauce ) : Serves 6

Ingredients :

White fish ( Tilapia, Sea Bass, Halibut, Rui, Katla, Bhetki ) : 1 and 1/2 lbs ( cut into medium sized pieces and washed ) 
Turmeric powder : 1/2 teaspoon
salt : to taste 
Oil : 4 to 5 tablespoon 
Nigella seeds : 1/2 teaspoon 
Fenugreek seeds : 1/2 teaspoon
Grated Ginger : 1 teaspoon and half teaspoon
Cumin Powder : 1 teaspoon  
Red Chili powder ( optional ) : as per tolerance 
Tomato : 2 big ( outer skin and seeds removed and make it puree ) I used fresh tomatoes, you can use canned too. 
Whole Green Chillies : as per tolerance
Sugar : 1/2 teaspoon or to taste ( optional )

Method :

1. Wash and pat dry fish pieces. Sprinkle salt and turmeric on them, coat it well and set it aside. Let it rest for about 10 minutes.

2. Add oil to a medium sized pan and heat it up. Once oil is ready ( hot ) add the fish pieces in two batches and lightly fry them ( quickly and without browning them ) on the both sides. Once they are done set it aside.

3.  Keep the flame medium high. Add oil in the same pan ( if needed ) and add nigella and fenugreek seeds.  Once they are aromatic ( do nut burn them, it will take a minute ) add the grated ginger. Stir it well and add the cumin powder and red chili powder ( optional ). Keep stirring until oil starts to come up from the sides of pan.

4. Add the tomato puree and again give some stirs. Let it cook until raw smell goes off and oil starts separating from the spices. Add the whole green chillies. In a minute or two add a cup of warm water. Also add salt and sugar. 

5. Cover the pan and bring to a boil.Once it starts boiling open it and add the lightly fried fish fishes. Cover the pan again and bring it to a simmer and cook until the fish is tender. It will take 4 to 5 minutes. 

6. Check the desired consistency and adjust the seasoning. Serve with steamed rice. 


  1. Sounds like an amazing curry. I love to make fish curries, but it never turns out that well. I will definitely try this one out, sounds easy and yum.

    1. Thanks Asha! If you like to have fish curry, then definitely try this one, no fuss but very flavorful :-)

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