Sunday, March 10, 2013

Masala Methi Jheengey- Shrimps in a spicy sauce

If you were to ask me whether I enjoy eating seafood,I would have to say a clear no. However, I have realised that I am confused in reality, it seems there are times when I not only like, but actually enjoy all things 'fishy'. I have grown up eating fish cooked in a particular way only. And that is the Bengali way. When I got married, I discovered a whole new cuisine. My husband is from south of India and his food is amazingly different from mine! Anyhow, so these two styles were the only ones I have known. I have remained fussy over the years. There is always something that is not quite right about me eating fish. Yet, there are times when I contradict myself completely and proceed to stun the hubster. Like how I 'love' sushi! I dont know how, but well, I do! And then I love all kinds of shell fish. Go figure!

Considering that in my parent's home, fish was rarely cooked owing to my mother's severe allergy to 'all' kinds of fish/seafood, I have now reached a stage where I cook a mean fish fry or a fish curry! I am not sure if I can still say I have started liking it all, but then I force myself because it is such a healthy meat to consume. However, Shrimps/Prawns are something, I have no problems declaring that I absolutely love. Love it. In any form. Anytime. The recipe I am sharing is also something I came up with to please myself actually. Not bengali, not malayalee, not tamil or even benarsi ! It was just for me this weekend, I wanted to experiment and see if I can come up with something different and not worry about pleasing the man. Hmmphh. It turned out quite lovely actually.

Here's what you will need.

1/2 kg  : shelled Shrimps, washed and drained completely
A bunch of chopped green onions with stalks.

For the marinade:

1 tbsp:  Grated ginger        
1 tsp:    Turmeric powder  
1tsp :    Cumin roasted and crushed :                      
1tbsp:   Corriander seeds roasted and crushed :   1 tsp heaped
2tbsp heaped: Dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi):  
1/2tsp: freshly cracked black pepper corns:        
1tsp:     Red chilli powder
1tbsp:   Juice of fresh lemon
2tbsp:   finely chopped fresh corriander/cilantro leaves
2-4:       finely chopped fresh green chillies

Salt to taste

Mustard oil (or any vegetable oil) - 4-5 tbsp

Wash and drain the shrimps well. Marinate it in the spices mentioned above including the grated ginger. Do not add salt to the shrimps just yet. Keep it marinated for an hour or so. Next up, chop the green onions including the stalks. In a wok, heat the oil. Add the chopped green onions and stalks and fry untill well cooked on medium flame. You need to brown these onions. Once they are evenly browned, simply add the marinated shrimps and continue to mix and stir and cook untill all the water that the shrimps release evaporates, leaving behind a thick coating.  However, dont overcook those babies! If you cook this uncovered, on a medium to high heat, the water will evaporate fast and you dont have to worry about overcooking the shrimps. Keep stirring and mixing. Add salt in the very end.

Browning the green onions first up.

You can see water/moisture collecting at the base of the wok, we need it to dry out.

 Another tip is, make sure you drain the shrimps really dry after washing, first apply turmeric and then the rest of the spices. The turmeric does a good job of absorbing the excess mositure. Shrimps dont take a long time to cook obviously. So again, be careful with the timing, I would recommend less than ten minutes from the time you tip them in in hot oil. Do a taste check, adjust salt and add more lemon juice if you want it slightly tangier. The main flavour dominating this dish is that of fenugreek/methi leaves. It imparts an awesome aroma and texture, so do not leave it out.

Once done, give it a final mix around and serve with cumin/zeera pulao like I did. I also made dal fry tadka to go with it, including a big garden salad and some raosted papads. Finger lickin' good it was!  


  1. This looks soo delish.... I simply love these... A must try recipe....