Some of the popular Assamese cuisines are acidic or sour named as ‘tenga’.‘Tenga’ or a sour dish is a curry made with various souring agents. A favoured tenga dish of delight in this hot and humid climate is a sour fish curry known as ‘masor tenga’ মাছৰ টেঙা . The dish forms an integral part of dining in every household in Assam. ‘Masor tenga jul’ or sour fish curry is prepared in many ways and the taste depends on the souring agent. Sourness is usually prepared from tomatoes, lime or sometimes ou tenga (elephant apple) or thekera tenga (wild mangosteen).
This issue we again bring before you on popular demand a repost of Masor Tenga by Rakhi Phukan and some other fish preparations .
Fish has infused and inspired many cuisines across civilizations. Its exquisiteness has encouraged many exciting distinct and enriched recipes. Cook it anyway, the aroma of the fish hangs somewhere in the mouth leaving an extreme pleasure of a satisfied meal. The magic in cooking fish lies in understanding its texture, shape, fat content, scales or even bones. Fish can be simply fried, cooked in spicy tomato gravy, mustard with green chillies, poppy seeds, bamboo shoots, marine herbs, and seasonal vegetables, steamed inside plantain leaves, cooked with curd, any sour sauce or even tangy sweet sauce.
The simplest spice that one can think for fish is salt. But to make it peppy, aromatic spices like coriander, fennel, pepper, fenugreek, mustard seeds, tamarind, curry leaves, coconut milk, curd, cinnamon, garlic, onions, gingers, cardamom, cloves, lemon etc. are used. A very common type of spice usually used in eastern part of India is panch puron, a blended flavor of five spices: green fennel seed, black mustard, nigella seeds, golden fenugreek and buff-coloured cumin seeds. The real essence of a fish curry lies in its technique of cooking. The whole fish piece in a curry needs to be obsessively wholesome. Even if mixed with vegetables, the fine fish curries are those that have a nourishing and distinct appearance. Like a beautiful landscape a fish curry with vibrant spices is just faultlessly ideal for a lazy Sunday.
Rakhi Phukan Saikia, writes us a mouth teasing Ilish fish curry cooked in spicy spinach.
1.Mustard oil, turmeric and salt
3.Curd ( as per the amount of pieces taken )
4.Ginger, onion and green chili for masala paste.
5.Spinach as per the pieces of fishes
6.8-10 pieces of onion leaves, coriander leaves for aroma to make gravy
1.Marinate the Ilish fish with curd and keep it for 3 hours
2.The marinated fish is to be fried slightly in oil
3.In a pan take 3-4 tablespoons of mustard oil
4.Put the paste of ginger, onion and green chili to it and fry it till it turns golden brown. To it put the paste of spinach, onion leaves and fresh coriander leaves (must be a smooth paste) and stir it in low flame.
5.Add salt and turmeric as needed. When the mixture leaves aroma put some warm water to it and allow it to boil.
6.Put the pieces of slightly fried fish into it. Cover it and cook it in low flame. Then garnish it accordingly. Cooking time is approximately 25 minutes.
Rou Fish Curry (Serves four) by Anjuman Borah
- Borali or Rohu fish: 4 pieces (marinated with salt and turmeric for 5 minutes)
- Curd: 150 gms
- Tomato (medium size): 1
- Onion (medium size): 2
- Ginger: half inch
- Salt to taste
- Sugar: 1 teaspoon
- Turmeric: half teaspoon
- Kashmiri chilly powder: 1 teaspoon
- Green chilly: 1 (or according to taste)
- Bay leaves: 2
- Paanch-furon: finely grounded 1 teaspoon
- Black Pepper: half teaspoon
- Raisins: 20-25 (soaked in water for at least an hour)
- Garam masala: half teaspoon
- Oil (for cooking): 3 large tablespoons
- Mint leaves
- Red Chilly: 1 (sliced longitudinally in 4 pieces)
- Finely chop 1 onion and keep separately
- Mix all the other ingredients except the bay leaves and garam masala, and grind into a fine paste
- Heat oil in a round bottomed pan. Fry the fish and drain.
- In the remaining oil, add the bay leaves and fry the chopped onion till golden brown
- Pour in the paste and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the fish and cook covered for another 5 minutes
- Pour in half a cup of water, cover and cook on low flame for 10 more minutes
- Add the garam masala when it is done
- Garnish with mint leaves and red chilly slices
- Serve hot with rice
1. 250gms of bottle gourd ( jatilou )
2. 3 pieces of rohu fish
3. 4 ripe tomatoes
4. 4 tablespoon of mustard oil
5. ¼ tablespoon of fenugreek seeds ( methi)
6. Salt and turmeric
1. Marinate the fish in salt and turmeric.
2. Fry the marinated fish pieces until half fried.
3. Slice the tomatoes and bottle gourd into small pieces
4. In the karahi (traditional frying pan), put mustard oil
5. After allowing the oil to warm up, put methi (fenugreek seeds) until they turn brown to dark brown.
6. Add the sliced tomatoes and cook in low flame. After sometime put the sliced bottle gourd into it.
7. Add salt and turmeric as per taste, sprinkled some water and cover the vessel.
8. When the ingredients soften and cooked properly, pour warm water according to need and allow it to boil. Into the boiling tenga place the fried fishes and cover it. After 5 minutes serve it hot. Cooking time 25 mins. approx.