Surmai Fish in Bengali & Indian Cooking: Things to Know

There are some days when you are lazy, not willing to cook anything but there are some lovely fine mornings when you want to indulge yourself in an opulent cooking for you and your family.

Sometimes I just want to languish in the bed, especially aften I look for some easy recipes which can quench my thirst especially when I am bogged down and suffice the cooking ritual of daily chores.

Surmai fish is just one fish which can be a good choice for Pune and Maharashtrian and people of Tamil Nadu. We love this fish because there are many interesting and easy recipes out there which can be made by this fish.

You can prepare any recipe for this fish and have it with simple dal chawal. In fact all the recipes of this fish can be cooked in minutes and you don’t have to give much labour to it.

Surmai Fish in Bengali & Indian Cooking

Uses of Surmai Fish in Bengali & Indian Cooking

Surmai or Sheer is a clean fish. If you are an occasional sea food eater then you must have a fancy for Pomfret but this one can beat the taste of any sea fish. It comes half of the price of Pomfret.

But the taste will overlap the taste of any other sea fish you like. This fish is less bony and can be easily cooked. You can cook it without any hassle. The occasional eaters will fall in love with it.

You can simply make small fillets of this fish from the fish market or if you are ordering cut pieces then there is nothing to worry.

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Make the pieces with half inch thickness by slant cuts. Then you can go for any recipes you like for this fish.

Surmai Tawa Fry:

This recipe is considered to be one of the easiest and mostly practiced recipes for this fish. There is a two-fold path of marination in this recipe which is considered to be one of the most important aspects of this cooking.

The first marination involves the tenderization of the whole filets. Though it does not require much softening, just keeping it for 10 mins will do.

The second part actually infuses the flavors which makes it much more unique in taste. It includes a thick paste of ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and coriander with salt as per taste.

You can marinate and keep the fish in the refrigerator for 30 to 40 mins. To be honest Surmai which has no flavors of its own thus it actually imbues the flavors while marinating.

After marination you can fan fry the fish 4 to 5 mins each side. Then you can relish it with steamed rice, Finger-Millet (Nachni) flour bhakri or Rice flour Bhakri. You can have this extremely flavorful dish at the comfort of your home.

Surmai Curry:

You can cut the small portion of this fish and fry them with ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and coriander with salt as per taste. Then add a little water and let it come to a boil to make a nice gravy.

Surmai Palau Hara Masala:

Surmai or kingfish cut and shallow fried with desiccated coconut, ginger, garlic and coriander leaves paste. Then steamed with basmati rice to make it like a dum pulao.

Surmai Rava Fry Straight from Goa:

This is similar to Surmai tawa fry where along with the thick paste of ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and coriander with salt as per taste we add rawa. It makes the coating strong and also gives you a great crisp while frying.

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Lahori Fish Masala:

Surmai fish cut in filets then slow fried after a lemon and salt marination. Then a gravy of onions chopped, tomatoes chopped, with chilies and thick paste of ginger, garlic, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and coriander with salt as per taste is added and finally coriander leaves after finishing the dish.

Goan Fish Curry:

Surmai fish medium cut, Kokum petals of Kokam, marble size tamarind, sliced green chills and sugar and salt to taste. It makes a unique gravy and wonderful dish.

Malwani/Bengali Fish Curry:

Surmai fish are cleaned, cut and washed thoroughly then with chopped onions, garlic cloves and green chilies. You can garnish with coriander leaves or garam masala.

Golden Fish Cutlets:

The pulp of Surmai fish is taken then added with bread crumbs, white vinegar, oil, green chili with a little bit of masala. You can make cute fish cutlets and deep fry them.

Mughlai Surmai Fish

Surmai fish with loads of masala paste and ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and salt as per taste. A tandoori and Mughlai flavor is given to the fish to make it a North Indian delicacy.

Memoni Dhokra:

Surmai fish with roasted cumin and coriander, turmeric and salt forming a simple gravy to make it a wonderful dish.

What is the Best Way to Cook Surmai Fish?

If you take my opinion and popular choice over the web then you can see it is best if you cook Surmai fish in a pan or tawa fry version.

First you need to marinate the fish with salt and lemon juice. Then after 4 to 5 mins add a second marination of ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and coriander with salt as per taste.

Slowly fry it in the pan or tawa just flipping it 4 to 5 times and it’s ready. Garnish it with coriander leaves and serve it with salad.

How Can You Tell It is a Surmai Fish?

Indo-Pacific king Mackerel or Surmai Fish or sheer fish is actually (Scomberomorus guttatus) obtained in the Indian ocean and usually served in the south western part of the country.

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In Tamil and Telugu it is known as Shermai, whereas Vanjaram in Andhra Pradesh. This fish is high in mercury and it is shaped like a shark with minimal bone and more flesh.

How to Make Surmai Fish Taste Good?

You can marinate the Surmai fish with a thick paste of ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, jeera, peppercorns and coriander, salt as per taste with a little bit of lime juice.

It makes the fish taste wonderful and unique in every way.

How Long Does Surmai Fish Take to Cook?

Surmai fish take a few minutes to get cooked. If it is pan fried then it takes 4 to 5 mins for each piece.

When there is any curry or gravy then depending on the masala it is added with, it gets cooked within the expected time.

How Do You Know When Surmai Fish is Cooked?

Surmai fish is like other sea water fishes. It actually starts to loosen up and the flesh from inside becomes visible.

You can prick it with a fork and understand whether it is cooked or not.

Questions & Answers:

How Does Surmai Fish Taste?

Surmai or sheer fish has an unmistakable sharp flavor with firm and succulent steaks. It actually takes the flavour of the masala it is cooked with.

What is Surmai Fish Called in English?

Surmai Fish is known as King Fish or Indo-Pacific king Mackerel Fish. It comes from a family of (Scomberomorus guttatus) and is mainly found in the Indian Ocean.

Is Surmai Fish Tasty?

Surmai has an unmistakable sharp flavor with firm and succulent steaks. When it is marinated with loads of spices it takes the flavor of those species and brings out the sea water taste in it.

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