Loitta Fish in Bengali & Indian Cooking: Things to Know

Loitta mach or lote mach, called Bombay Duck in English, is a popular fish in Bengal.  It is a favourite with fish loving Bongs in both West Bengal and Bangladesh.

This species of lizardfish lives and thrives in the tropical zones of the Indo-Pacific Ocean. It is also known as “strange fish” as it is not continuously distributed along the Indian coastline.

In India, this fish is usually procured from the Bay of Bengal, Lakshadweep Sea, Gujarat and Maharashtra. In Bombay, it is called Bombil whereas in Kerala, it is known as Bummilli.

Loitta is sometimes dried and salted before being cooked and consumed. It is then called shutki mach. When dried, the fish gives out a strong smell and is usually transported into sealed boxes.

Loitta fish is mostly consumed in Bengal and Maharashtra. Recipes with fresh Loitta or dried variety are best relished with steamed rice.

Loitta Fish in Bengali & Indian Cooking

Uses of Loitta Fish in Bengali & Indian Cooking

Bongs have a kind of love-hate relationship with Loitta fish. Some people love it whereas others have a strong dislike towards its slimy feel and tiny bones.

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However, the thumping majority will always be ready to relish the fish with steamed rice.

Loitta macher bhja is a common and convenient recipe in Bengal. The fishes are properly cleaned and then marinated with salt, mustard oil, turmeric powder and coriander powder.

The marinated fish are then kept aside for 10-15 minutes before deep frying. They work as snacks and with a bowl of plain hot rice and dal as well.

Loitta macher jhal is a mildly spicy recipe cooked with chopped onion, tomato slices and ginger-garlic paste. Sometimes, potato (finger cuts) is also used with the fish.

The strong flavours of onion and garlic and pungency of mustard oil seamlessly blend with each other, imparting a spicy flavour to the final result that will give anyone a challenge to resist temptation.

Loitta macher jhuri is another delicacy which is almost similar to Loitta macher jhal. It is prepared the way egg jhuri is cooked. Fried Loitta fish is mixed with onion and tomato slices, ginger-garlic-green chilli paste in mustard oil and cooked without water.

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This incredibly flavourful recipe has its roots in Bangladesh. When making the dish, be generous with the use of mustard oil.

Hence, if you are a fitness fanatic, never give this delicacy a try. The greasy outcome is incredibly delicious.

Loitta fish chop (Bombau duck fry)  is a scrumptious snack surprise. This innovative recipe works well with a cup of steaming tea or coffee to spice up your evening adda, especially when it is drizzling or chilly cold outside.

All Loitta fish recipes taste best if you use mustard oil. Pungency of mustard oil imparts an unmatched and unforgettable flavour to the dish.

Make sure to cook both jhal and jhuri on a low flame for the best result. Hence, you need to have a lot of patience to whip up the perfect flavours.

What is the Best Way to Cook Loitta Fish?

Marinating the fishes is the key to a flavoursome outcome. Use the ingredients in the right proportions.

Any compromise with the ratio will make your recipe go bad. Some Loitta dishes such as, jhuri and jhal require you to cook on a low heat.

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How Can You Tell It is a Loitta Fish?

Loitta mach is slender and soft. The adult fishes measure 40 cm in length though their average length is about 25 cm.

It is white in colour with bright pink sideways.

How to Make Loitta Fish Taste Good?

  • Marinate the fish properly.
  • When it comes to Loitta fish recipes, make sure to use only and only mustard oil.
  • A lot of mustard oil is required to whip up the best taste.
  • Never compromise with onion, garlic and ginger as they impart amazing flavours.

Questions & Answers:

How Long Does Loitta Fish Take to Cook?

It may take 15 minutes to cook Loitta fish.

How Do You Know When Loitta Fish is Cooked?

Loitta fish gets soggy and softer when properly cooked.

How Does Loitta Fish Taste?

This fish is a little salty to taste.

What is Loitta Fish Called in English?

Loitta fish is called Bombay Duck in English.

Is Loitta Fish Tasty?

Loitta fish is extremely tasty.

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