Kerala Fish (Meen) Molee / Moilee – Kerala Style Fish Stew is a classy gravy which is famous among Kerala’s Syrian Christians. It is made by marinating the fish in masala and frying it. Next, the fried fish is cooked in coconut milk with very low spice and other ingredients.
Just to describe this gravy in a little more detail, it is rich and a bit creamy, not only because of the fish juices but also due to the thick coconut milk. Please check the Notes section given below to make the gravy as thick as you like. It is really so delicious; you will be thankful that there is a decent amount of gravy as it is perfect for mopping up with Aappam (Palappam), Chapatti, Pathiri or spooning over steamed rice or Puttu!
Kerala Fish (Meen) Molee / Moilee – Kerala Style Fish Stew is the classy yet easy fish recipe you’ve been waiting for 🙂
You can also check my other Seafood recipes here:
- Kanava (Koonthal) Varutharacha Curry / Squid in Roasted coconut gravy
- Kerala Fish Fry / Meen Varuthathu / Meen Porichathu
- Prawn / Jhinga / Shrimp Dum Biryan
- Kottayam Style Red Fish Curry / Meen (fish) Vevichathu
- Kerala Meen Pollichathu / Fried Fish in Banana Leaf Wrap
I have a bite-sized video to show you how to make this dish.
- Onion – 2, Sliced
- Tomato – 1, Sliced
- Ginger – 2 tsp, Chopped
- Garlic – 2 tsp, Chopped
- Green chili – 3, Slits
- Curry leaves – 2 Sprigs
- Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
- Pepper powder – ½ tsp
- Coconut oil – 2 tbsp
- Salt – to taste
- Coconut – 1 cup, Shredded
- Water – ½ cup (for thick milk)
- Water – 2 cups (for thin milk)
To Marinate Fish:-
- Fish (I used Salmon fish) – 1 lb (500g) (you can check the Notes section given below for alternate fishes)
- Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
- Black pepper powder – 1 tsp
- Lemon juice – 1½ tsp
- Salt – to taste
- Mustard Seeds – ½ tsp
- Cardamom seeds – 4
- Cloves – 4
- Cinnamon stick – 1 small piece
- Bay leaf – 1
- In a bowl, add all the ingredients under ‘To Marinate Fish’ (except fish).
- Mix it well into a paste.
- Add the fish and rub the masala paste on it (before adding the fish, make sure the fish is cleaned in salt water and pat dry it).
- Keep it aside for 30 minutes to marinate.
- Meanwhile, in a blender, add 1 cup of shredded coconut.
- Add ½ cup of water (before adding water, check the Notes section to make the perfect coconut milk).
- Grind it well.
- Then using a sieve, pour the coconut mixture.
- Hand squeeze the coconut mixture caught in the sieve to extract the thick coconut milk (1st milk) and keep it aside.
- Using the same coconut mixture, add 2 cups of water and grind it until thick and creamy.
- Again, squeeze the coconut to extract the thin coconut milk (2nd milk) and keep it aside.
- Add coconut oil in a pan and rotate the pan to evenly spread the oil on all sides of the pan.
- Once the oil is hot enough, add the marinated fish.
- Fry both sides of the fish until it turns light brown.
- Transfer it to a paper towel to remove excess oil and keep it aside.
- In the same oil (in which we fried the fish), add the items given under ‘To Temper’.
- Add onion and saute it for a minute.
- Add green chili, ginger, and garlic.
- Saute it till it becomes translucent.
- Add turmeric powder and pepper powder.
- Mix it well.
- Add curry leaves and salt, and mix it well.
- Add thin coconut milk and mix it well. Allow it to boil.
- Once it starts to boil, add the fried fish (if you want the gravy to be thicker, check the 4th and 5th step in notes before adding the fish).
- Add the tomato and spread it evenly.
- Then close it with a lid, and allow it to cook for 10 minutes over medium flame.
- Once it is cooked, add the thick coconut milk (1st coconut milk).
- Mix it carefully without breaking the fish (you can also rotate and shake the pan carefully to mix the coconut milk evenly).
- Again, allow it to boil for 3 minutes.
Kerala Fish (Meen) Molee / Moilee – Kerala Style Fish Stew is now ready to serve with Aappam (Palappam), Chapati, Pathiri, or Puttu!
- Before marinating the fish, clean the fish in water by adding salt to remove the strong fishy smell.
- You can use the oil of your choice, but using Coconut oil will give the gravy a Kerala touch.
- Here, I’ve used Salmon fish. You can also use King fish, Pearl Spot fish, or Pomfret fish.
- If you want the gravy to be thicker, add 1 – 1½ cups of water instead of 2 cups when making the thin coconut milk.
- If you want the gravy to be even more thicker, boil it until the gravy becomes semi thick before adding the fish to the coconut milk.
- To make coconut milk creamier and thick, add warm water while grinding.