Rupchanda Macher Jhol Recipe | Chinese Pomfret Curry

5 from 1 vote
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Rupchanda Macher Jhol is a flavorful Bengali fish curry made using Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret.

This dish is a delightful combination of simple homemade spices like turmeric, cumin, coriander, and more, creating a delicious and savory taste.

Let us dive into the recipe details.

Rupchanda Macher Jhol

Key Takeaways:

  • Rupchanda Macher Jhol: Bengali fish curry using Chinese Pomfret and homemade spices for a delicious taste.
  • Recipe Ingredients: Pomfret, turmeric, onion, ginger-garlic paste, tomatoes, green chilis, cumin, red chili, coriander powder, mustard oil, and salt.
  • Cooking Steps: Marinate fish, fry, sauté onions, ginger-garlic paste, add spices, tomatoes, water, and cook for a flavorful curry.
  • Pro Tips: Ensure careful frying, balance spice sautéing, adjust gravy thickness, season to taste, let flavors meld, and garnish with fresh coriander.
  • Serving Suggestions: Best served with steamed rice or chapatis, highlighting its savory taste for lunch or dinner.

The Ingredients:

Rupchanda Macher Jhol Ingredients

  • Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret: 6 pieces (cut & cleaned)
  • Turmeric powder: 1 ½ tbsp
  • Onion: 2 pieces (chopped)
  • Ginger-garlic paste: 2 tbsp
  • Tomato: 1 (chopped)
  • Green chilis: 4 pieces (slitted)
  • Cumin powder: 1 tbsp
  • Red chili powder: 1 tbsp
  • Kashmiri red chili powder: 1 tbsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 tbsp
  • Mustard oil: 3 tbsp
  • Salt to taste

How to Cook Rupchanda Macher Jhol (Step by Step Images)?

1. Take 6 pieces of Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret fish and smear less than ½ tbsp of turmeric powder and less than ½ tbsp of salt onto them. Keep them aside for 10 to 15 mins.

Marinating Rupchanda Mach

2. Add 2 tbsp of mustard oil and heat it. Add the fishes and fry them. Flip them over and fry them on both sides.

(Expert tip: Be very careful while adding the fishes to the oil. Be very careful while flipping the fishes from one side.)

Frying Rupchanda fish

3. Take them out on a plate when they are done.

Taking out fried fish

4. Now add 1 tbsp of mustard oil to the same wok. Add 2 medium sized chopped onions and sauté them.

Sautéing onions

5. Add 2 tbsp of ginger-garlic paste and stir-fry it until the raw smell disappears.

Adding ginger-garlic paste and stir-frying

6. Add 1 tbsp of turmeric powder, 1 tbsp Kashmiri red chili powder, 1 tbsp red chili powder, 1 tbsp coriander powder, and 1 tbsp cumin powder. Stir-fry everything by adding a little bit of water. Let the raw smell evaporate from it.

Adding turmeric powder, Kashmiri red chili powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and stirring

7. As soon as the raw smell from the spices disappears, add the chopped tomatoes. Add ½ tbsp of salt and stir-fry it until the tomatoes are moist and the spices release the oil.

Adding chopped tomatoes, salt and stirring

8. Add water to make the gravy and mix everything. Add the fried fishes. Add 4 slitted green chilis and cover it. Let it cook for 10 mins.

(Expert tip: Add water as per your desired gravy consistency. In fact, add salt and chilis as per your taste.)

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Adding fried fishes. slitted green chilis to the gravy

9. After 10 mins, uncover it and turn off the flame. Add coriander leaves on top.

Adding coriander leaves on top of Rupchanda Macher Jhol

10. Rupchanda Macher Jhol is ready and transfer it to a bowl.

Rupchanda Macher Jhol is ready

Pro Tips for Making Rupchanda Macher Jhol

Perfect Fry: When frying the Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret, ensure the oil is adequately heated before adding the fish. Be cautious while placing the fish in hot oil to prevent splattering. Flip the fish gently to avoid breaking it apart.

Balanced Spice Blend: While sautéing the spices, maintain a moderate heat to avoid burning. Add a splash of water if necessary to prevent the spices from sticking to the pan. Allow the raw aroma of the spices to dissipate, ensuring a well-balanced and aromatic base for your curry.

Gravy Consistency: Adjust the water quantity based on your preferred gravy consistency. Some enjoy a thick gravy, while others prefer a thinner consistency. Experiment with water quantity to suit your taste.

Seasoning to Taste: Salt and chili preferences can vary widely. Taste the curry before finalizing it and adjust the seasoning accordingly. Remember, it’s easier to add more seasoning than to reduce excessive saltiness or spiciness.

Resting Time: Let the cooked curry rest for a few minutes after turning off the flame. This allows the flavors to meld together beautifully, enhancing the taste of the dish.

Garnish Gracefully: The final touch of fresh coriander leaves adds a burst of freshness. Sprinkle them generously on top just before serving for an appealing presentation and an extra layer of flavor.

What to Serve with Rupchanda Macher Jhol?

Serving Rupchanda Macher Jhol with steamed rice

Steamed Rice: The traditional and most popular choice to serve with Rupchanda Macher Jhol is steamed rice. Its neutral flavor perfectly complements the rich and spicy flavors of the fish curry.

Chapatis or Rotis: Soft chapatis or rotis can also be an excellent accompaniment for those who prefer bread with their curry. Their texture can help soak up the flavorful gravy.

How Does Rupchanda Macher Jhol Taste?

Rupchanda Macher Jhol Featured Image

Flavorful Fusion: Rupchanda Macher Jhol embodies the essence of Bengali cuisine with its rich and flavorful combination of homemade spices like turmeric, cumin, coriander, and more.

Aromatic Spice Blend: The dish presents a well-balanced amalgamation of spices, creating an aromatic symphony that enhances the overall taste experience.

Distinct Mustard Oil Essence: The use of mustard oil infuses the curry with a unique pungency, contributing significantly to its taste profile and adding depth to the flavors.

Tender and Flavorful Fish: The Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret fish, cooked within the spices, absorbs the flavors beautifully, resulting in a tender, succulent texture that harmonizes with the spicy and tangy gravy.

Spicy-Tangy Balance: The curry strikes a perfect balance between spiciness, derived from red chilis and green chilis, and a subtle tanginess from the tomatoes, creating a flavorful contrast.

In summary, Rupchanda Macher Jhol encapsulates a delightful fusion of aromatic spices, tender fish, and a well-balanced taste profile that makes it a quintessential and flavorsome dish in Bengali cuisine.

Rupchanda Macher Jhol Alternatives

Pabda Macher Jhol: Substitute Rupchanda with Pabda fish, a freshwater fish popular in Bengal. Follow a similar recipe using Pabda fish for a different taste experience.

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Rohu or Katla Macher Jhol: Utilize Rohu or Katla fish instead of Rupchanda for a heartier fish curry. These fishes offer their distinct flavors to the dish.

Shorshe Bata Diye Macher Jhol: Experiment with a mustard-based gravy by incorporating ground mustard paste along with other spices. This variation brings a unique tanginess to the dish.

Kalojeera Diye Macher Jhol: Use kalonji (black cumin) seeds along with other spices to create a more intense and earthy flavor profile to the fish curry.

Macher Kalia: Try a richer and thicker preparation by adding cashew paste, cream, and a blend of spices like garam masala for a luxurious twist.

Bengali Fish Curry with Coconut Milk: Introduce coconut milk to the gravy for a creamy and mildly sweet taste, providing a departure from the traditional flavors.

Recipe Card

Rupchanda Macher Jhol Featured Image

Rupchanda Macher Jhol | Chinese Pomfret Curry

By Mita Mondal
Rupchanda Macher Jhol is a traditional Bengali fish curry prepared using Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret, combined with homemade spices like turmeric, cumin, coriander, and more.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Marination 10 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6
Calories 176 kcal


  • 6 pieces Rupchanda fish (cut & cleaned)
  • tbsp Turmeric powder
  • 2 pieces Onion (chopped)
  • 2 tbsp Ginger garlic paste
  • 1 piece Tomato
  • 4 pieces Green chili (slitted)
  • 1 tbsp Cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tbsp Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 tbsp Coriander powder
  • 3 tbsp Mustard oil
  • Salt to taste


  • Prepare the Fish: Take 6 pieces of Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret fish. Rub them with a bit of turmeric powder and salt. Set aside for 10 to 15 mins.
  • Fry the Fish: Heat 2 tbsp of mustard oil in a pan. Carefully add the fish pieces and fry them on both sides until golden brown. Be cautious while flipping them.
  • Sauté Onions: Using the same pan, add 1 tbsp of mustard oil. Sauté 2 medium-sized chopped onions until golden.
  • Add Flavors: Add 2 tbsp of ginger-garlic paste and cook until the raw smell fades. Mix in 1 tbsp each of turmeric, Kashmiri red chili, regular red chili, coriander, and cumin powders. Stir-fry with a splash of water to remove any raw spice smell.
  • Add Tomatoes: Once the spices cook through, add chopped tomatoes. Sprinkle ½ tbsp of salt. Cook until the tomatoes soften and the spices release their aroma.
  • Create the Gravy: Pour water to achieve your preferred gravy consistency. Add the fried fish, 4 slitted green chilis, cover, and let it simmer for 10 mins.
  • Final Touch: After simmering, uncover, turn off the heat, and garnish with fresh coriander leaves.
  • Ready to Serve: Your delicious Rupchanda Macher Jhol is ready to be enjoyed!


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Fish Selection: Freshness matters! Ensure the Rupchanda or Chinese Pomfret fish is fresh, firm, and without any off-putting odor. This guarantees a delicious taste in your final dish.
Marination Time: While marinating the fish with turmeric and salt, it's ideal to allow it to rest for 10-15 minutes. This helps the flavors penetrate the fish, enhancing its taste.
Careful Frying: When frying the fish, maintain a medium heat to ensure it cooks evenly without burning. Be cautious while flipping to avoid breaking the delicate fish pieces.
Spice Sautéing: Sauteing the spices is crucial. Moderate the heat to prevent burning; add a splash of water if needed to avoid sticking. This step releases the aromas and develops the base flavors.
Adjusting Spice Levels: Control the amount of red chili powder and green chilis based on your spice tolerance. Taste as you cook and adjust to suit your preference for heat.
Gravy Consistency: Control the gravy's thickness by adjusting the water quantity added. Some prefer a thicker consistency, while others prefer a lighter, more liquid texture.
Resting Period: Allow the cooked curry to sit for a few minutes after turning off the heat. This resting time helps the flavors meld together, resulting in a more flavorful dish.
Garnishing Impact: The addition of fresh coriander leaves at the end not only enhances the presentation but also adds a final burst of freshness and flavor to the dish.
Serving Suggestions: Rupchanda Macher Jhol pairs exceptionally well with steamed rice or chapatis. The neutral flavors of these accompaniments beautifully complement the rich and spicy fish curry.
Experimentation Encouraged: Don't hesitate to tweak spice quantities or try variations by adding ingredients like coconut milk, yogurt, or other spices to personalize the dish to your taste preferences.

Nutrition Info (Estimation Only)

Nutrition Facts
Rupchanda Macher Jhol | Chinese Pomfret Curry
Amount per Serving
Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat
Polyunsaturated Fat
Monounsaturated Fat
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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Rupchanda fish is a highly delectable fish.

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It is cooked with simple homemade spices like cumin, coriander, turmeric powder etc making it delicious and savory.

Rupchanda Macher Jhol pairs well steamed rice. You can have it any time during lunch and dinner.

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