Naga Fish Curry With Bamboo Shoots

As you enter the state of Nagaland, lush green forests and beautiful hills and rivers greet you every step of the way. Food, in Nagaland, is about using what is available locally and adding some basic spices to create wonderful dishes that are unique to East Indian Cuisine. The region is known for its abundance of bamboo shoots and that makes it one of the key ingredients in most dishes from the region. Dishes are usually made with a curry as rice, which is one of the staples of the region, goes really well with these kinds of dishes.

Bamboo shoots might be a little hard to find in most parts of the world but if you can get your hands on some, you should really try out this brilliant Naga Fish Curry with Bamboo Shoots. There are many things distinct to the dish, especially the use of Mustard Oil, another regular feature of this region. There are many ways to make this and almost every home in the region will have their own recipe, one of which might be to throw everything in at once and cook it for about 15-minutes. However, this recipe is slightly different and requires you to marinate the fish before you can start cooking it.

Ingredients required for Naga Fish Curry with Bamboo Shoots

Here is a list of the ingredients you need to get started:

• River Carp or Rohu - 1
• Tomatoes - 2 to 3
• Onions - 2
• Bamboo Shoots - 1 Cup
• Green Chillies - 5
• Garlic - 1 Clove
• Turmeric Powder - 1 Teaspoon
• Red Chilli Powder - 1/2 Teaspoon
• Water
• Mustard Oil
• Shallots - 1 Cup
• Salt

For the Marinade

• Ginger & Garlic Paste - 2 Tablespoons
• Red Chilli Powder - 2 Teaspoon
• Turmeric Powder - 1 Teaspoon
• Salt - 1 Teaspoon
• Oil

Preparing the Ingredients for cooking
Before you can start cooking, you need to do a few things including marinating the fish

• Add the ginger-garlic paste, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt to a bowl and create a paste by adding in a little oil
• Clean the wish, pat it dry and add it to the bowl, and cut it up in smaller pieces
• coat it nicely (inside and outside) with the marinade and leave the fish in the marinade for at least an hour, although the best results come when you keep it marinated overnight
• Shred the bamboo shoots
• Chop the chillies, garlic clove and shallots
• Finely dice the onions and quarter the tomatoes

Let's start cooking our Naga Fish Curry with Bamboo Shoots

• In a deep-pan, heat enough oil to deep-fry the fish pieces until they are nicely brown
• Take the fish pieces out and set them aside to allow them to drain
• In another deep dish, heat a couple of tablespoons of mustard oil and once the oil starts smoking, add the diced onions
• Cook until the onions are caramelized, add the chopped chillies & garlic clove and, then, add the tomatoes
• Once the tomatoes start breaking down, add the turmeric powder, red chilli powder and salt
• Add the bamboo shoots and about half-a-litre of water before covering the pot and bringing it to a boil quickly
• Let the pan boil for a minute or so before lowering the flame to let the covered-pot simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes
• Now, add the fried fish and cook for another 10-minutes
• Sprinkle the shallots around the dish and cook for another 5-minutes
• Turn off the flame and stir the shallots-in, gently, without breaking the fish
• Put the lid back on and let the fish rest for about 10 to 15-minutes
• Serve with white rice

While you can make this dish with any other form of oil, mustard oil gives it a special, authentic, taste. The other thing you need to know is that the bamboo shoots need to cook out completely so make sure you are tasting things completely before finishing up. Cooking times and taste-preferences vary depending on the equipment, so make sure you taste your dish constantly and create the perfect Naga Fish Curry with Bamboo Shoots. Feel free to add in a fish of your choice to customize the dish even more!

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