Rui or Katla Macher Kalia recipe – Bengali Style Fish Kalia recipe with step-by-step detail

Cook Rui or Katla Macher Kalia recipe at home with easy step-by-step detail. Macher Kalia is a spicy yet delicious Bengali Rui or Katla fish curry.

Rui or Katla Macher Kalia is a most popular Bengali fish curry that originally came from Bengali biye barir food menu. For making biye barir style macher kalia, best to choose heavyweight matured rui (rohu)/ katla fish (catla carp), cut into thick and big pieces for having a thick fat portion under the skin of each fish piece. Due to not using heavyweight matured rui or katla fish our homemade macher kalia never tastes like biye barir macher kalia recipe.

For making Rui or Katla Macher Kalia, first Rui or Katla fish pieces are marinated with salt and turmeric powder. Then fry the fish, and make gravy by roasting onion, ginger, garlic, tomato, green chilli paste with whisked yoghurt, cumin powder and red chilli powder. Cook the fish into the spices and cook until the gravy gets quite dry and oil appears on the top. Lastly, end the cooking by sprinkling the garam masala in the fish curry.

Along with piping hot steamed rice, macher kalia is the most unbeatable combination for any Bengali (who loves eating fish) and suits the Bengali term “Machh- E- Bhat-E- Bangali“. However, can eat it with Basanti pulao or Bengali vegetable pulao too.

Rui Katla Macher Kalia - Bengali Style Fish Kalia served in a deep oval plate with piping hot rice and gondhoraj lemon(গন্ধরাজ লেবু)

Macher Kalia is nothing but an old spicy Bengali fish curry, in one word, kalia is an exotic recipe of Rui or Katla macher jhal. In spite of being exotic, this dish can be easily made from scratch with simple spices available in every Indian kitchen.

Generally, Kalia is prepared with Bengali pona mach (Rui or Katla fish), however, I mostly make this recipe with Katla fish of at least 1 kg to 1.5 kg. As with the same weight of Katla and rui, I feel katla tastes better than rui. Though it depends on personal choice, if you like rui must go with rui, no problem.

The taste of Kalia does not only depend on the spices used in this recipe but also depends on the taste of the fish. To make the best fish kalia must use more than 5 kg weight rui or katla fish. As for making this fish kalia, today I used 8-9 kg weight katla machh.  That biggest rui or katla is known as Paka Pona Maach available in every Bengali fish market.

However, heavy-weight Rui or Katla fish is basically used in making Bengali Biye Bari, Annoprashon or Poite Barir Macher Kalia recipe which makes this fish curry scrumptious. However, if you often cook Kalia at home, try to use live(jyanto) or good quality fish that suits best your health.

Even unflavoured yoghurt (or Indian curd) & tomato are 2 more most important ingredients to make fish Kalia. Curd & tomato both are generally used by professional Bengali cooks, to make the gravy rich, and creamy & bring a delicious taste as well. 

If you are bored with regular bengali fish curry then must try this traditional & exotic finger-licking rui or katla macher kalia recipe. No matter whether you are a Beginner or a Bachelor, my step-by-step recipe detail (with pictures) and tips described at the end of this recipe surely guide you to make a perfect kalia recipe.

But do not forget to let me know your valuable feedback about this dish.

Other than this fish kalia you can try some other Bengali 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 garlic)

Recipe card of Rui or Katla Macher Kalia recipe (with rohu/ catla fish)

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 an old-age Bengali fish curry recipe prepared with Rui or Katla fish steaks, fried & cooked in a red rich gravy of onion-ginger-garlic-tomato-green chilli, a few dry powdered masalas, yogurt & garam masala powder. Made it just in 30 minutes.

Ingredients of Rui or Katla Macher Kalia

  • ○ 770 g Katla or Rui Fish (cut into thick slices)

  • 2 Medium Onion (finely chopped)

  • ○ 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)/yoghurt

  • ○ 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) F

  • 2 pcs Bay leaves

  • 1/2 cup(7-8 tbsp) Mustard Oil

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

How to Cook Rui or Katla Macher Kalia

  • Clean & wash the fish slices, drain the water well and smear the fish 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, a little fry, then add 1 medium-sized sliced onion and 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 the mixture 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 to 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 minute. Turn off the heat.
  • Mouthwatering Katla Macher Kalia is ready, serve with piping hot rice and enjoy your meal.

Notes

  • Do not use the curd without beating and also use the liquid part of the curd.
  • For making kalia, try to use the fish more than 1 kg, otherwise get more bones.
  • Try to use eggless fish for better taste.

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

Step 1: Smear or marinate the fish with turmeric and salt

  • Clean & wash the fish pcs, drain the water well.
  • Then smear the fish with 3/4 tsp salt & 1/2 tsp turmeric. As shown in the pic below.
Salt and turmeric smeared katla fish

Step 2: Fry the fish in mustard oil

  • Heat the pan, add 7-8 tbsp (that means 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

Step 3: Make the gravy of Kalia

Fry onion

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

Roast the masala in oil

  • Then add the masala paste (contains 1 medium onion, 1 tomato(medium), 1/2 inch(5 g) ginger, 7 garlic cloves & 5 green chillies).
  • Mix the masala with fried onion, and sauté for a few seconds.
Making macher kalia masala
  • Then add 3/4 tsp cumin powder, 1/2 tsp red chilli powder, 3/4 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder.
  • Then add 1/2 tsp turmeric & 1/2 tsp salt, and mix them well.
Adding cumin powder, red chilli powder, kashmiri chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt

Add curd & garam masala

  • Afterward, 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 into the gravy

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

Step 4: Cook the fish in gravy

  • Let the gravy boil, after 1 min of boiling, add the fried fish to 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
  • After 3-4 mins of cooking, add 1/8 tsp of garam masala powder and 1 tsp of ghee kalia gravy.
  • Mix it well. Cook it for 1 more minute. Turn off the heat.
Adding ghee
  • Mouthwatering Katla Macher Kalia is ready, serve along with piping hot rice and enjoy your meal.
Macher kalia (Bengali fish kaliya) is ready

Simple notes about Rui or Katla Macher Kalia recipe

  • To avoid the fatty part of the fish, good to make kalia with jyanto rui or katla machh, whose weight is 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 in kalia however I use it to enhance the taste & aroma. Though you can make it without ghee.
  • You must have noticed, here I used little sugar while making the gravy. Use sugar to balance the sourness of curd & tomato in the gravy otherwise, that can make the gravy tangy. Though if you prefer the tanginess skip adding sugar.

2 thoughts on “Rui or Katla Macher Kalia recipe – Bengali Style Fish Kalia recipe with step-by-step detail”

  1. I recently had the pleasure of trying out your recipe and I must say, I absolutely loved it! The combination of tender Katla fish and the rich, flavorful gravy made for a truly delicious meal. The blend of spices and the tangy tomato base added a delightful depth of flavor that was simply irresistible. This dish has definitely earned a permanent spot in my list of favorite recipes.

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