Saturday, 8 September 2012

"Patra ni Macchi" or Pomfrets Steamed in Banana leaves - A Parsi delicacy

"Patra ni Macchi" is a mouth-watering Parsi dish, which is nothing but Fish Steamed in Banana leaf.
The fish normally used is "Pomfret", but you also use any other white fish.
In the traditional recipe, fish slices are used, but I have made this dish using whole pomfrets since I had bought small pomfrets.
Pomfrets are excellent sources of protein that are low in fat. Pomfret fish is high in Vitamin D. It is also loaded with minerals such as iron, zinc and calcium.
The ingredients required for this dish are also the ones which are always or easily available in the kitchen, so preparing this was really easy.
I found this recipe in my grandmom's hand written cookery note book.
Personally I am more fond of fried fish being a true Mangalorean, but this is one steamed fish dish which I relish. Its not just a healthy dish but also very easy to make and since the fish cooks very fast , steaming time is just 5 minutes.

Serves 3

Banana leaves - 4 - wiped dry
Pomfrets - 500 gms - if small keep them whole, if 1 fish is 500 gms you could slice them
Oil - 1 tsp
Salt - 1/2 tbsp
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Red chilly powder - 1/4 tsp
Vinegar - 1 tbsp
To grind:
Coconut grated fresh/desiccated - 1/2 cup
Green chillies - 10
Garlic - 15 flakes
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tbsp
Sugar - 1/2 tbsp
Coriander leaves - chopped - 1 cup
Mint leaves - 1 tbsp
Water - 1/2 cup
Lemon juice - 1 tbsp
Salt - 1/2 tbsp

Marinate fish/slices with salt, turmeric and chilly powder and keep aside. Allow to marinate for atleast 30 minutes.

Cut banana leaves into portions large enough to wrap each fish/slice.
Grease banana leaves with little oil and keep aside.
Grind all the ingredients under "To grind" into a thick smooth paste.
Coat each fish/slice with the ground paste.

Place each piece of fish on a banana leaf and pack it and tie with a thread.

Steam in the cooker for 5 minutes after the 1st whistle.
Release the steam and remove the fish once you have switched off the heat.

Serve hot.

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