Ilish a.k.a Hilsa possesses a special place in Bengali’s palate and that is irrespective of the Bangal Ghati divide and this is not because of the royal taste of Ilish Maach (Hilsa Fish) but also for the easy making processes involve with Hilsa. This is surprisingly true that for many preparation it is not even required to fry Hilsa and little steaming would do the wonder and Ilish Macher Shorshe Bata diye Jhal, Bhapa Ilish ( Steamed Hilsa) and Doi Ilish are commonest examples of Ilish preparations which requires no frying. I think Ilish can be considered as part of Bachelor Cooking if a person has appetite for fishes given many Ilish dishes requires nothing but hassle free cooking.
Fish chunks steamed with Doi or Curd is one of the popular fish preparations in Bengal and we mostly opt for Ilish Mach or Rui/ Katla (Rehu) for making this. I have already given the recipe of Rehu Fish Chunks cooked in Curd known as Doi Maach here which I love to cook whenever I am out of time but need to have a light fish curry. Doi Ilish is the Hilsa version of the same dish and probably more popular than Doi Maach. Given Ilish is now available in abundant in Kolkata and I prefer to store Ilish in my fridge and Doi Ilish is one of the dish I prefer to make especially whenever I have a craving for a special fish curry along with some Steamed hot rice that involves hassle free cooking. Making Hilsa involves a Big ME nowadays given I don’t prefer to give Ilish to the little one and Mehebub is not here in Kolkata with us as he has opted for an foreign assignment.
- Hilsa Fish (Ilish Mach): 4-5 Pieces (100 g each)
- Green Chili: 5-6
- Plain Curd: 200 g
- Mustard Oil: 2 Tbsp.
- Sugar: 1 Tbsp.
- Turmeric Powder: 1 Tsp.
- Wash Fish chunks thoroughly and rub half of the Turmeric Powder and ½ Tsp. of Salt and leave fish chunks for 10 minutes.
- In a big bowl take Plain Curd and using a spoon beat the curd until smooth.
- Add Mustard Oil, Salt, Sugar and rest of the Turmeric Powder to the Curd and mix vigorously.
- Add slit Green Chilies to the Curd mixture.
- Now place Hilsa Chunks in the curd mixture and coat from both sides.
- Cover the bowl with a lid and leave it for 30 minutes with the curd marinade.
- Doi Ilish can be cooked either in flame or in microwave as well. Both the processes mentioned below:
- Using Wok or Pan: Take a deep bottom Pan or Wok and pour Fish chunks along with the marinade in the pan and add around 2 Cup of water to the mixture. Cover the Pan with a lid and cook in medium flame for around 15 minutes. Flip fish pieces in halfway and cook till you get desire consistency of the gravy.
- Using Microwave: Take a Microwave safe deep bowl and pour Fish chunks along with the marinade in the pan and add around 2 Cup of water to the mixture and Cook in High Temperature for 5 minutes and then in 40% temperature for around 15 minutes.
Serving Suggestion: Nothing but with some hot steamed rice and may be a Hindi Classic Monsoon Song in background!