I've been a bit busy (good busy) with work catching on and a cousin visiting from India. Its been quiet around here and I haven't really cooked that much or taken pics in a while. Its a long weekend here and for some strange reason, the weather has been great. We've been out enjoying the sun before the next set of rains and temperature drops happen.
I made nethili fry a couple of weeks back with the intention of serving it as a starter for a party we threw at home. Since it was my first time with the fish, I decided to try it out a day before, just to see if it would turn out ok. It didn't. It went all soggy on me and I decided to not serve it at the party. Instead I just bought crisps :)
I have this thing against deep frying and after some helpful inputs from Ria, I decided to give it a shot again. I didn't deep fry it, instead shallow fried it. It does make a terrible mess (or maybe that's just me) and takes a tad longer than deep frying, but you do get crispy anchovies..the way its supposed to be. If cooked well, they are great to snack on and perfect with some cold beer.
Nethili- 250 gms, cleaned- remove head, tail and all the unnecessary inside parts
Lemon juice- 1 tsp
Salt- 1/4 tsp
Oil- to fry
Kashmiri chilli powder- 2 tsp
Turmeric powder- 1/4 tsp
Fennel powder- a lil less than 1/4 tsp
Pepper powder- 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder- 1 tsp (optional)
Ginger paste- 1/2 tsp
Garlic paste- 1 tsp
Yoghurt- 1/2 tbsp (optional)
Curry leaves- a sprig
Salt- to taste
Mix together all the ingredients for the marinade. If it is too dry, feel free to add a spoon or so of water to get a smooth paste.
Do a taste test and add more salt or spice if required.
Add the fish to the marinade and mix well to coat the pieces well. Keep aside for about 15 minutes.
Heat the oil in a kadai or frying pan (enough to cover the base of the pan properly). It should be really hot, otherwise you will end up with soggy ones.
Add the fish (in batches if required) and fry on both sides, till brown and crispy. Keep the heat on medium all through.
Remove the fish and the crispy curry leaves with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Squeeze a lemon over and serve warm.
Notes: The recipe can be easily doubled.