Spicy Mackerel Dish

Growing up in a Bengali household we ate a lot of traditional Bengali food, which I loved.  One thing I remember was this mackerel dish.  It was one of the first things I learnt to cook as soon as I started making food for my own family.  Primarily because it’s so easy, but also because the fish doesn’t taste ‘fishy’.  My son loves this, so when I cook it for him, I cut back on the green chillies. 

Mackeral Baji 1

This is a variation of my mother’s recipe, where she uses fresh fish.  Her version takes a lot longer as the fish needs to be cooked and deboned.  I use tinned fish because they’re easier to work with, but also, I can keep them for a last minute recipe idea.  Like most dishes, this is pretty versatile; you can use either mackerel or sardines in either tomato or oil. 


1 Medium Onion, chopped finely

250g Mackerel Fillets (I use tinned fillets in tomato sauce).

4-5 Green Chillies, roughly chopped

1 Medium Potato, peeled and cut into small batons

½ Tbsp. Salt

2 Tbsp. Oil (less if the fish is tinned in oil)

Handful Chopped Fresh Coriander


¼ Tsp Turmeric Powder (Haldi)

1 ¼ Tsp Curry Powder

½ Tsp Coriander Powder (Dhania)

½ Tsp Chilli Powder


1.       In a pan, heat the oil and fry the onions, chillies and salt until the onions become soft. 

2.       Add the spices to the onions and mix.  Cook this on a low heat for about 10 minutes. 

3.       Add the fish to the pan.  You may have to break the fish up into flakes, using a fork.  Add the potatoes and cook on low heat until the potatoes are cooked and most of the juices have dried up.  This should take about 15-20 minutes.

4.       Add the coriander and cook for a further 5 minutes. 

This dish is best served with plain rice.





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