Mains, Starters

Meen Pollichathu- fish baked in a banana leaf

Meen Pollichathu is a traditional Kerala dish which is packed with flavours and a very heart warming dish. The uniqueness of this dish is that the fish is cooked with lots of spices wrapped in a banana leaf. The banana leaf renders an additional taste which elevates the overall taste of the dish to the next level. It is guaranteed to transport you to God’s own country in every bite.

Meen Pollichathu is very popular around restaurants in Kerala. I first had it when I visited Munnar (Kerala) for my honeymoon. I immediately fell in love with the gorgeous melting in the mouth texture of the fish. As soon as I got my hand on some fresh banana leaves here, I just had to make this favourite of mine.

Hope you enjoy making this at your home as well.

Meen Pollichathu

  • Servings: 1-2
  • Time: 40 mins
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients

  1. Fish (of your choice, used Barramundi here)- 250 gms
  2. For marinade:
    1. 1/2 tsp Chilli powder,
    2. 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, salt
  3. For masala: Onion- 2 medium Tomato- 1 Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp Oil- 2 tsp Curry leaves- few Ginger garlic paste – 1 – 2 tbsp Chilli powder- 1 tsp Coriander powder – 1 tbsp Turmeric powder- 1 tsp Desiccated coconut- 2 tbsp
  4. Big banana leaf- 1 half

Directions

1. Preparing the masala: In a pressure cooker or pan , add little oil.

2. Splutter mustard seeds, add onions , tomato, ginger garlic paste and all the spices for the masala in point 3 of Ingredients.

3. If using pressure cooker add 1 tsp water, cover and keep it on high for 1-2 whistles and remove. Release the pressure and mix the masala into a paste using the ladle.

4. If using pan, cook it all into a thick masala consistency.

5. Separately marinate the fish with little chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt for around 15 mins.

6. Pan fry with 1 tsp oil for around 2 mins on each side of the fish. Set aside.

7. Clean and wipe the banana leaf. Show the leaf over open low flame for few seconds. This will ensure that the leaf does not break or rip while folding.

8. Spread the banana leaf. Take some prepared masala paste and spread it. Place the fish on top of the masala. Again put the remaining masala paste over the top of the fish and spread it.

9. Fold in the leaf over the coated fish on all four sides.

10. Take a pan and place this wrapped banana leaf on to it. Cover with a lid and cook for 10 mins on each side.

11. The fish will get cooked well with the masala.

12. Remove the banana leaf from the pan and slowly open it.

13. Yummy and delicious Meen Pollichathu is ready to be served. Enjoy!

Also please watch the video recipe below :

Side dish, Starters

Phuket Fish – Indo Chinese restaurant style chilli fish

After moving to Australia the cuisine I miss the most is the Indo Chinese food. It is so popular in India next to Indian food. It is quite different from the authentic Chinese food. Probably can say Chinese inspired but with the added Indian heat and spices to suit the Indian palate.

Every time I visit a Chinese restaurant in Chennai India, my hot favourite fish to order is the Phuket fish usually as a side or starter. It is a spicy fish coated with lots of finely chopped onions, ginger and garlic tossed up in soy sauce and chilli. Recreating this delicious dish at home was truly an ecstatic moment.

I am so happy to share with you all this restaurant style Phuket fish. A very tasty and yummy recipe not to be missed.

Ingredients ( serves 2)

1. Basa fish ( or any boneless fish of choice)- 1 big fillet (350 gms)

2. Onion- 1/2 if small 1 finely chopped 

3. Ginger- 2 tsp finely chopped 

4. Garlic- 10 cloves finely chopped 

5. Red chilli- 6 nos 

6. Soy sauce – 3 -4 tbsp

7. Spring onions- a little 

8. Coriander leaves: little to garnish (optional)

9. Pepper powder( ideally white but I used black) – a pinch

10. Oil and Salt as required 
For the method please see my video below:

Starters

Peaches,Blueberries and Banana Smoothie with Granola

A heathy breakfast is just what your body needs to enjoy another beautiful day. It can be just as simple as putting together the fruits you have and serve it up with your imagination.

This smoothie did not involve any thought process. Just blend, top it and enjoy!

Things you need:

For Smoothie:

  1. Peaches – 1 or 2
  2. Blueberries – few
  3. Banana – 1/2
  4. Yogurt – 3 big spoonful
  5. Milk – 1/2 cup

For Topping:

  1. Cut orange -1
  2. Edible flowers – 3 (Optional)
  3. Granola of your choice – 1/2 cup

Please watch the video below for the method:

 

Starters

Corn on the Cob

Corn on the cob is a healthy and nutritious snack or starter. When I was a kid we used to visit the beaches where the corn will be sold by roasting over fire and coated with spices. Always delicious and yummy.

This is a similar version made at home. I have made the corn two ways in the video recipe: one way is by boiling in water and then roasting, the other way is directly roasting over the fire and coating with spices. Hope you enjoy it!

Starters

Morning Blues – Smoothie

One of my favourite go to breakfast is a simple and quick smoothie. This particular smoothie has a gorgeous purple colour which is actually my favourite colour too.

Blueberry Banana Smoothie:

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Ingredients:

  1. Blueberries-1/4 cup
  2. Ripe Banana – 1 medium
  3. Strawberries- 2 (Optional)
  4. Yogurt of choice- 1/2 cup
  5. Milk- 1/2 cup

Method:

  1. Blend all the ingredients into a thick smoothie.
  2. Add more milk if required.
  3. Serve chilled and enjoy.
Starters

Jalapeño Poppers

Here is something which will make you feel hot!
I recently had this dish at a very nice restaurant and immediately added it to my try out list.

Jalapeño with cream cheese ( Jalapeño Poppers as it is popularly known)

An interesting fact: Joey “Jaws” Chestnut holds the Major League Eating record for jalapeño poppers, eating 118 in 10 minutes at the University of Arizona on 8 April 2006- Source WiKi. That is simply ‘WOW’.

Going back to the making of the dish. My try out came out well except for the outer crumb breaking a bit. Included the tip to avoid that as well in the video.

Things you need:

1. Jalapeño – 3-4
2. Cream cheese – 5 tblsp
3. Mozzarella cheese – 3 tblsp
4. Plain flour – 1/2 cup, Corn flour – 1/4 cup mixed into a batter
5. Egg beaten – 1
6. Bread crumbs for coating
7. Oil for frying and salt as needed

Please watch the video for the method