medium size mackerels – 1 kg
chilli powder – 4 tsp, or to taste
cumin powder – 1 tsp
turmeric powder – ½ tsp
tamarind – size of a big lime
vinegar – Â¼ cup
onion – ½ kg chopped finely
garlic – 5 tbsp, chopped finely
green chillies – 4-6, chopped finely
oil – 1 cup
salt – to taste
tomatoes – 250 gms, chopped
Cut away the head and tails of fish, gut them, wash and drain well.
Soak tamarind in vinegar and extract the juice.
Mix all the powders with this juice. mix with all the chopped ingredients.
Add salt to taste. Smear each fish with some of this masala and fill some of it in the stomach cavity.
Reserve the remaining masala.
Take a thick bottomed deep pan and line the base with a piece of banana leaf or foil.
Pour some oil in it and spread a layer of fish in it.
Sprinkle some of the reserved masala on top. Repeat the layers to use up all the fish, masala and oil.
Top with tomatoes. Place the pan on a low flame.
Cover with flat lid and place some live charcoal on it.
Cook for about 25-30mnutes or till the fish is cooked.
Shake the pan gently to mix the layers, without breaking the fish.
Note: Instead of cooking this dish on fire, the fish can be layered in a baking dish, covered and baked in a hot oven.