macher kalia

How to make Macher Kalia-Bengali Fish Curry

Macher Kalia is a Bengali delicacy that is made for special occasions.

How to make Macher Kalia-Bengali Fish Curry

Difficulty:BeginnerPrep time: 5 minutesCook time: 25 minutesServings:6 servings


Macher Kalia is a delicious bengali fish curry. It is usually made with a big size (3-4 kg) Katla or Rui fish (carp family freshwater fish). The gravy is onion ginger/garlic based with aromatic spices. Tastes amazing with Pulao or white rice. Macher Kalia is a perfect dish for special occasions.



  1. Make a paste of onion, ginger, and garlic and set aside
  2. Coat the fish with some salt and turmeric powder
  3. Add 4 tbsp. of mustard oil to a pan and heat it to high temperature 
  4. Add fish pieces and fry till golden brown on both sides (~2 min per side)
  5. Set the fish pieces aside
  6. Add cumin seeds, bay leaf, cinnamon sticks, cloves, green cardamom, turmeric powder and salt to taste
  7. Give it a quick stir
  8. Add the onion, ginger and garlic paste
  9. Stir fry the paste till it looses its raw smell and turns brown in color
  10. Turn down the heat and add cumin powder and kashmiri red chilli powder
  11. Add a splash of water so the masala doesn’t burn and give it a quick stir
  12. Add tomato purée.
  13. Beat the yogurt well and add it in
  14. Turn up the heat to medium
  15. Stir the paste till it turns oily and glides easily on the surface of the pan (~5 min)
  16. Add 1 cup of water
  17. Add slit green chillies
  18. Place a lid on a let it simmer for 5 min
  19. Check for salt and add salt to taste and some sugar to taste
  20. This curry is usually a little sweet
  21. Add the fish pieces
  22. Place the lid on and let it simmer for a minute
  23. Add garam masala powder
  24. Stir
  25. Garnish with coriander leaves 
  26. Enjoy this with Pulao or plain white rice
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