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chital macher muthia

…poila baisakh recipes…

…chital macher muthia or fish dumplings in ginger gravy…

Chital macher muthia or fish dumplings in light onion-ginger gravy is again one of the classic delicacy from Bengali cuisine and is mainly the forte of Bangladeshis or the bangals (the east bengals) who excels in it.

Personally I have never tried this dish because of its rarity in our local fish market in Bangalore but on my every visit to Kolkata my mom prepares this exotic dish. Chital maach is called Clown Knifefish in English as per Wikipedia and I have heard the best breed of this oily fish travels all the way from river Brahmaputra.

Chital macher muthia or fish dumplings


chital macher muthia

chital macher muthia or fish dumplings

Chital mach or Clown Knifefish fish :600 gm
Green chili (chopped):2 tsp
Green chili paste: 1 tsp
Onion paste:200 gm
Cumin powder:1 tsp
Red chili powder: 1 tsp
Turmeric powder: ½ tsp
Ginger-Garlic paste: 3 tbsp
Garam masala:1tsp
Bay leaves: 2-3
Coriander leaves (chopped):1 tsp
Sugar and salt to taste
Oil: For frying and cooking

To prepare the muthia or the dumplings :

Scrap the meat from the fish (not the stomach part, the other one or gada in bengali) with the help of a spoon and remove the bones. To this add little salt, one tea spoon of ginger-garlic paste and green chili paste. Mix them well and knead it like dough. If requires sprinkle few drops of oil to prevent it from sticking in hand. Keep the dough aside.

Boil enough water (about 10-12 glass of water or fill the skillet 3/4th with the water) in a skillet and add the fish dough into the boiling water. Cook for 15-20 minutes. It will have a spongy ball like texture. Drain the water and pat dry the dough with a kitchen towel.

Once it is sufficiently cools down, cut it into big cubes. Heat some oil in a pan and fry the muthia till golden brown. Take them out and reserve.


To prepare the gravy:

To the same oil add bay leaves, cloves and cinnamon. Next add the onion paste and fry them till it becomes translucent. Add ginger-garlic paste, turmeric powder, green chilies, garam masala, salt and sugar. Stir fry them till the oil separates.

Add 3 cups of water and cook them for few minutes. Once the gravy thickens (slightly) add the fried muthias and boil for few more minutes.

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve the hot chital macher muthia with steamed rice or pulao.


If you like this recipe then please consider sharing it and do not forget to send me your feedbacks.


  • Reply
    March 5, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    Use the stock from boiling the fish balls instead of water

    • Reply
      March 5, 2011 at 2:39 pm

      we usually scraped the raw chital maach / fish and then boiled it in water, that refuse water can be used in the gravy.

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