An aromatic and delicate fish stew that pairs excellently with ghee-flavored rice.
- Fish steak (preferably bekti or king fish): 300gm
- Coconut milk: 300ml
- Coconut oil or vegetable oil: 3 tbsp
- Onion, finely chopped: 1 medium
- Tomato, finely chopped: 1 medium
- Garlic, finely chopped: 4 cloves
- Ginger, grated: 2 tsp
- Green chillies, slit: 7-8
- Curry leaves: 6-7
- Juice from 1 medium lemon
- Salt: To taste
- Sugar: To taste
- Turmeric powder: 1 tsp
- Red chilli powder: 1 tsp
- Marinate the Fish: In a bowl, season the fish steaks with salt, turmeric powder, and lemon juice. Ensure they are well coated and let them marinate for 15-20 minutes.
- Prepare the Base: In a pan, heat the oil. Once hot, add garlic and sauté until it turns golden. Introduce the slit green chillies and sauté for another 5-6 seconds.
- Sauté Onions and Ginger: Add in the chopped onions and sauté until they are translucent and golden. Mix in the grated ginger and a splash of water, continuing to sauté until the raw aroma of ginger diminishes.
- Incorporate Curry Leaves and Tomatoes: Toss in the curry leaves and let them sizzle for about 10-12 seconds. Add the chopped tomatoes, blending them well with the other ingredients in the pan. Cook until the tomatoes soften and meld into the mixture.
- Cook the Fish: Gently place the marinated fish steaks onto the pan, ensuring they are covered with the aromatic base. Sauté them gently for about 2-3 minutes on medium heat.
- Form the Gravy: Pour in lukewarm water to create a light, flowing gravy consistency. Season with turmeric powder, red chilli powder, and salt. Cover the pan and let it simmer for 3-4 minutes, allowing the flavors to merge.
- Introduce Coconut Milk: Slowly stir in the coconut milk, continuing to cook the stew for another 4-5 minutes on medium heat.
- Final Seasoning: Adjust the seasoning, adding more salt or sugar as needed. Finish by stirring in the lemon juice and allowing the stew to simmer for an additional 30 seconds.
- Serve: Dish out the Meen Moilee while hot and serve it alongside ghee-flavored rice for a complete meal experience.
Meen Moilee tastes even better the next day as the flavors get more time to meld together. Enjoy this Kerala classic!