Rui Katla Macher Kalia recipe – Bengali style Fish kalia recipe with step-by-step detail

Macher kalia is a simply delectable Bengali fish curry prepared with Rui/Katla fish in simple spices. A most popular dish from Bengali biye barir food menu recipe. Kalia is best to prepare by choosing heavyweight rui(rohu)/ katla(catla) machh for having a thick fat portion under the skin of each fish piece. This bengali fish curry is prepared by frying fish & cooked in a red rich gravy consisting of onion-ginger-garlic-tomato-green chilli, a few dry spices, yogurt/curd(bengali tok doi) & garam masala. Macher Kalia along with piping hot rice(মাছের কালিয়া দিয়ে গরম ধোঁয়া ওঠা ভাত) is just an unbeatable combination to any Bengali(loves eating fish) suits the bengali term machh- e- bhat-e bangali(মাছে ভাতে বাঙালি). 

Macher kalia served in a deep oval plate with piping hot rice and gondhoraj lemon(গন্ধরাজ লেবু)

Macher kalia is nothing but a Bengali-style spicy fish curry, kalia in one word, an old, traditional, exotic version of Bengali macher jhal. Easily made it from scratch with common kitchen spices. Generally, Kalia is prepared with pona mach (Rui or Katla fish), however, I mostly make it with Katla/Catla fish.

The taste of this fish curry not only depends on the spices used in this recipe but also on the taste of the fish too. That taste comes with live rui katla or fresh heavyweight Rohu/Catla fish (called paka Paka pona Machh in bengali). For regular ranna(home-style cooking), try to use live(jyanto) paka pona machh for the best result. However, only paka rui or katla is used in making Bengali biye bari, annoprashon or poite barir kalia which makes macher kalia scrumptious. As if for making this fish kalia, today I used the katla machh that belongs to an 8-9 kg weight

Even curd/unflavoured yoghurt & tomato are 2 more important ingredients used in Kalia. Generally used by professional Bengali cooks, to make the gravy rich, creamy & bring delicious taste as well. 

If you are bored with regular bengali fish curry then must try this traditional & exotic finger-licking macher kalia recipe. No matter whether you are a beginner or a bachelor, my step-by-step recipe detail(with pictures) surely guides you to make it perfect. Please let me know your valuable feedback about this dish.

Other than this fish kalia you can try other fish curry recipes from my website- the list is given below,

Doi Maach recipe (Biye Bari Style)
Aloo diye Shol macher jhal jhol
Pabda Macher Sorse Jhal
Pomfret Macher Jhal
Chital macher peti kaliya
Tel koi (Koi macher recipe)
Chingri macher Malai curry
Kolkata patai Bhetki Macher Paturi (in banana leaf)
Aloo phulkopi bori diye winter time katla macher jhol (without Onion)
Alu jhinge danta jeera ada bata diye katla macher patla jhol (without Onion)

Recipe card of Macher Kalia recipe (with rui/ katla machh)

Rui Katla Macher Kalia recipe – Bengali style Fish kalia recipe with step-by-step detail

Recipe by Moumita PaulCourse: LunchCuisine: Bengali, IndianDifficulty: Easy
Servings

7

servings
Prep time

5

minutes
Cooking time

25

minutes
Calories

300

kcal
Total time

30

minutes

Macher kalia is a simply delectable Bengali fish curry prepared with Rui/Katla fish in simple spices. Heavy-weight Katla/Rohu fish steaks are fried & cooking in a red rich gravy of onion-ginger-garlic-tomato-green chilli, a few dry spices, yogurt/tok doi & garam masala. Made it just in 30 mins.

Ingredients of Macher Kalia

  • ○ 770 g Katla/Rui Fish(Machh)

  • 2 Medium Onion

  • ○ 1 Medium Tomato

  • 7 pcs Garlic cloves

  • ○ 5 g(1/4 inch) Ginger

  • ○ 5 pcs Green Chillies(as per taste)

  • ○ 2 tbsp Curd(Tok doi)/yogurt

  • ○ 3/4 tsp Cumin Powder

  • 1/2 tsp Red Chilli powder

  • ○ 3/4 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder

  • ○ 1 tsp Turmeric powder

  • ○ 3/4 tsp Garam masala powder

  • ○ 1/2 tsp Sugar

  • 1/2 tsp Salt(as per taste)

  • 2 pcs Bay leaves

  • 1/2 cup(7-8 tbsp) Mustard Oil

  • Cooking tools used
  • ○ A Flat Non-stick Pan
    ○ A wooden Spatula

Cooking Method

  • Clean & wash the fish(≈770 g rohu/katla), drain it well and smear it with 3/4 tsp salt & 1/2 tsp turmeric powder.
  • Heat the pan, add 7-8 tbsp(1/2 US cup) mustard oil, and heat the oil until releases smoke.
  • Fish goes into hot oil, and fry it until golden from both sides. Remove the fish from the pan.
  • Add 2 bay leaves to the pan, little fry, then add 1 medium-sized sliced onion, fry until soft, succulent & golden. 
  • Then add the masala paste(which contains 1 medium onion, 1 tomato, 1/2 inch(5 g) ginger, 7 garlic cloves & 5 green chillies), mix well, and sauté for a few seconds.
  • Next, add 3/4 tsp cumin powder, 1/2 tsp red chilli powder, 3/4 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder along with 1/2 tsp turmeric & 1/2 tsp salt, and mix it well.
  • Afterwards, add 1/4 tsp garam masala powder. Then add 2 tbsp curd/unflavoured yoghurt/tok doi(beat well before use) and 1/2 tsp sugar. Mix well.
  • Cook the masalas until leave oil & release the aroma. Then add 1+ 1/2 cups of water.
  • Let the gravy boil, after 1 min of boiling, add the fried fish into the gravy.
  • Slow down the flame & cover the pan for 5 mins.
  • After 5 mins, remove the lid and turn the fish, again cover the pan.
  • After the next 3-4 mins of cooking, add 1/8 tsp of garam masala powder and 1 tsp of ghee. Mix it well.
  •  Cook it for 1 more min. Turn off the heat.
  • Mouthwatering Katla Macher Kalia is ready, serve with piping hot rice and enjoy your meal.

How to make Macher Kalia recipe (with step-by-step detailed pictures)

Fish pieces (katla) smeared with turmeric and salt

  • Clean & wash the fish(≈770 g Rui/Katla fish), drain it well and smear it with 3/4 tsp salt & 1/2 tsp turmeric.
Salt and turmeric smeared katla fish

Frying fish in mustard oil

  • Heat the pan, add 7-8 tbsp(around 1/2 US cup) mustard oil, and heat the oil until releases smoke.
  • Fish goes into hot oil, and fry it until golden from both sides. Remove the fish from the pan.
Fried katla fish for making macher kalia Fried katla fish for making macher kalia

Frying onion in the same oil

  • Add 2 bay leaves to the pan, little fry, then add 1 sliced onion(medium size), fry until soft, succulent & golden. 
Frying onion

Make Kalia masala and roast in oil with fried onion

  • Then add the masala paste(which contains 1 medium onion, 1 tomato(medium), 1/2 inch(5 g) ginger, 7 garlic cloves & 5 green chillies), mix well, and sauté for a few seconds.
Making macher kalia masala

Add dry spice powder and seasoning

  • Then add 3/4 tsp cumin powder, 1/2 tsp red chilli powder, 3/4 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder along with 1/2 tsp turmeric & 1/2 tsp salt, and mix it well.
Adding cumin powder, red chilli powder, kashmiri chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt

Garam masala powder and curd

  • Afterwards, add 1/4 tsp garam masala powder. Then add 2 tbsp curd/unflavoured yoghurt/tok doi(beat well before use) and 1/2 tsp sugar. Mix well.
Adding garam masala powder and curd with masala to make macher kalia

Pour water to make kalia gravy

  • Cook the masalas until leave oil & release the aroma. Then add 1+1/2 cups of water.
Adding water

Cook fish in boiling gravy

  • Let the gravy boil, after 1 min of boiling, add the fried fish into the gravy. Slow down the flame & cover the pan for 5 mins.
Fried katla fish in macher kalia gravy
  • After 5 mins, remove the lid and turn the fish, again cover the pan.
After turning fish in gravy

Add ghee and garam masala powder at last

  • After 3-4 mins of cooking, add 1/8 tsp of garam masala powder and 1 tsp of ghee. Mix it well. Cook it for 1 more min. Turn off the heat.
Adding ghee
  • Mouthwatering Katla Macher Kalia is ready, serve along with piping hot rice and enjoy your meal.
Macher kalia ready

Simple notes about this recipe

  • To avoid the fat of paka pona, you may use jyanto pona machh weight around 1.5 kg-1.8 kg.
  • Now the question is, does Ghee mandatory for making this recipe? The answer is no, ghee is not mandatory however I use it for enhancing the taste & aroma. Though you can make it without ghee.
  • You must have noticed, here I used little sugar. I used it to balance the sourness of curd & tomato. Though if you prefer the tanginess skip adding sugar.

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