Saturday, 7 December 2013

Fish mappas | Keralan coastal fish curry in coconut milk | Kukskitchen

Mappas is a delicious curry from god's own country made with spiced coconut milk. Traditionally fish or chicken are used as the main ingredient, but one can use egg or potato instead.

A few things before we start:
  • Use a fleshy fish like king fish cut in to medium sized pieces. I used fresh cod.
  • Pearl onions or chuvannulli (ചുവന്നുള്ളി) is traditionally used. However, shallots (സവാള) can be used if you can't find pearl onions. Use one medium shallot for this recipe.
  • You can use tamarind paste instead of കുടംപുളി. Use 1 tsp for this recipe. 
  • Traditionally an earthern pot (മീൻ ചട്ടി) is used and this imparts the classic flavour to the fish mappas.

Fish Mappas
മീൻ മപ്പാസ് 
Serves 6


1- Fish - 1 kg
2- Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
3- Ginger and garlic crushed -1 tbsp
    Curry leaves - 1 sprig
4- Pearl onion (ചുവന്നുള്ളി) - 10 
5- Coriander powder - 1 tbsp
    Red chili powder- 1 1/2 tbsp
   Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
    Fenugreek powder - 1/4 tsp
6- Tomato - 1
7- Kudampuli(കുടംപുളി) - 2 pieces
    Thin Coconut milk - 2 cups
8- Thick Coconut milk - 1/2 cup
9- Oil - 1 tbsp
    Salt to taste


  • Heat one tbsp oil in a pan, add mustard seeds and let it splutter.
  • Add (2) and saute well.
  • Add sliced shallots / pearl onions and saute till they turn golden brown.
  • Reduce the heat and add (5). Saute till the aroma of the powders hit your nose, stirring continuously to avoid burning.
  • Now add chopped tomatoes and saute till they turn soft.
  • Add in thin coconut milk, kudampuli and salt to taste.Cover and bring to boil.
  • Place pieces of fish in this sauce carefully and swirl the pan lightly to mix. Cover and simmer till fish pieces are cooked. Remember, donot stir during the cooking process, only swirl the pan.
  • Once the fish is cooked and the gravy is thick, add thick coconut milk and swirl the pan lightly.
  • Simmer for 2 minutes. Do not let it boil.

Serve hot with rice, appam, pathiri or idiappam.

Sherin Deepu


  1. Hi! First time here, love the recipe! Would definitely on my trying list :)

    1. Thank u dear. Please do share pictures when u try. Lovely to see u here.

  2. thanks dear sherin for coming to my place dear and placing a beautiful comment :) i have followed you .. glad if you follow me back sweety :)
    i love fish curry n your clicks are just awesome ..

    1. Thank u so much dear......


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 I'm Sherin, aka kukku. 

An excited mum, a  responsible doctor , a friend's friend , a thankful daughter, a thankful sister and a passionate singer,  an enthusiastic cook, food writer and food photographer . That's me in a nut shell.

A doctor in my day job and a food writer and food photographer by night. I came in to cooking because of the people around me, be it the women in family who are amazing cooks or the men who luv to eat. My son is my best critic. :) Started cooking while I was at school, my first attempt being a sweetie, no surprise there for people who know me. I got interested in cooking more after marriage, as most girls do. My experiments with food blossomed after coming to the UK, where the grocery stores opened up a variety of foodie opportunities for my hungry tum.

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