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Bengali Traditional Fish Kalia Recipe For Holi

By: Debdatta Mazumder

Do you know how to prepare Fish Kalia? 'Macher Kalia’is one of the most remarkable dishes of the Bengali cuisine and no occasion and festival can be complete without this preparation.

From marriage ceremonies to festivals like Durga Puja, this is the omnipresent dish with other mouth-watering preparations as well. Actually, the Bengalis are the people who are great food lovers and never get tired of trying new recipes.

Now, when it comes about festivals like Holi, popularly known as 'Dol-jatra’ among Bengalis, something special at lunch and dinner is a must have at every household.

Also read : Indian Sweet Recipes For Holi

Now, how can you separate fish from a Bengali’s meal right? They are so fond of fish that there is a popular proverb about them which says, “Mache-Vaate Bangali” (Bengalis with fish and rice).

So, fish kalia is one of those famous recipes that has been passed from generations together; and every Bengali woman knows how to cook fish kalia for Holi or any other festival.

Here is the recipe of how to cook fish kalia for Holi, which is the most popular one. You can include your own addition too. Read on to know more:

How to Prepare Fish Kalia

Serves - 4

Preparation Time - 15 Minutes

Cooking Time - 20-30 Minutes


  • Rui or Katla Fish (Rohu or Katla Katla Fish) - 4 pieces
  • Potatoes - 2 medium sized (cut into quarters)
  • Onions - 2 (finely chopped)
  • Tomatoes - 1 (finely chopped)
  • Lemon Juice – 1 teaspoon
  • Curd – 1 teaspoon
  • Ginger Paste – 2 teaspoon
  • Garlic Paste – 2 teaspoon
  • Chilli Paste – 2 teaspoon
  • Mustard Oil – 4-5 teaspoon
  • Tomato Puree – 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric Powder – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Cumin Powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Red Chilli Powder - According to taste
  • Salt - According to taste
  • Sugar – 1 teaspoon
  • Garam Masala Powder - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Bay Leaf - 2
  • Whole Spices - 1 small piece of cinnamon stick, 2 cloves and 2 cardamoms
  • Dry Red Chillies - 1 (optional)
  • Panch Foron (Cumin, Saunf, Fenugreek, Kalonji, Mustard) - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Ghee - ½ TSP
  • Water
  • Coriander leaves and raisins for decoration

12 Mouthwatering Recipes For Your Holi Party!


1. Wash the pieces of fish thoroughly. Now, marinate the pieces in salt, turmeric, curd and lemon juice. Keep it aside for 15-20 minutes.

2. Add mustard oil into a pan and let it get hot. When the oil is hot enough, fry the fish pieces well and keep those aside.

3. Now, fry the potatoes until those turn golden brown in colour. Keep those aside, separately.

4. Add the chopped onions and fry until it becomes golden brown. Add ginger, garlic and chilli paste.

5. Now, add the whole spices, panch foron, bay leaves and dry chillies into the oil.

6. Now, take a bowl and mix turmeric, cumin and chilli powder with water and pour it into the pan. Cook continuously to evaporate the water. Add tomato puree. Cook again, so that the oil becomes separate from the spices.

7. Add potato into the spices and cook it well, so that all the spice enters into the pieces. Add salt according to your taste.

8. Cover the pan for a few minutes and cook in low heat. Check the potatoes. If those are still not boiled, add ½ cup of water and bring it back to boil.

9. When the potatoes are almost boiled, add fish pieces and chopped tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.

10. Turn off the stove and add ghee and garam masala powder if you want to. Cover the pan again for a few minutes standing time.

11. Decorate it with coriander leaves and raisins before serving it hot.

Do let us know your feedback on this recipe and enjoy the festival of colours. Happy Holi!

Read more about: holi, non vegetarian, fish, recipes
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