Sundays are special, but such a pain in the neck for the homemaker who has to put on one’s thinking cap to hit upon a special menu every time to please the entire family. The British are lucky…they have come up with the idea of the Sunday Roast which is pretty much standard for every household and has been there without slipping off the Sunday menu for ages. For us back in India though, variety is the spice of life. A brief scan of the things we cook for breakfast is enough to get the point….Dosa, Idly, Poori, Paratha….goes the list. So it is indeed a challenge to produce a spread for Sunday lunch which would make the entire bunch of hubby and kids go…Woww!
The Kababs over the buttered rice is sure to catch anyone’s attention and has the power to instantly satiate in terms of looks….the rice with each grain separate has that inviting aroma of butter toasted garlic…. The skewered fish in the kabab with onions and capsicum squares are roasted to perfection…some even having the charcoal burnt colour adding to the appeal. What looks like an incredibly difficult dish to execute is actually one of the easiest. The marinade can be prepared and kept in the fridge overnight, so too the rice, cooked and stored. The rest of the process is just cakewalk…The butter garlic rice preparation would need just about 5 minutes…the time you need to skewer your fish and veggies. Once done, give the rice a rest and lay the skewers in the hot pan… being fish, the whole process just needs 5-6 minutes and you are ready to plate up this winner of a dish.
My Fish Kabab recipe owes its origin to Beera Chicken House, Amritsar. On the plane from New Delhi to Amritsar we (my daughter and I) spotted an article in their in-house magazine describing in detail the gastronomic delights of Amritsar. For us it was like striking gold and without wasting much time we quickly scribbled down all the eateries listed to check out once we reached Amritsar. The next two days we were in food heaven…the lassis and the Chole Batures and the Jalebis…we had them all, ticking almost all places listed in that tiny scrap of paper we had in one hand with the mobile GPS on in the other, meandering through the narrow lanes of the city, much to the chagrin of hubby dearest. It was time to say adieu to Amritsar and still there was this one place to check out…Beera Chicken House, which they said, made the juiciest and tastiest tandoori dishes. Melting imploring eyes and pleading looks got the better of the husband and soon we were chugging along in the Phatphati to Beera’s. If we had missed it would have been a shame…what a feast we had! As I bit into the crisp and crunchy bits of the Tandoor grilled chicken, I was trying to mentally jot down the ingredients that had gone into the making of the mouthwatering dish.
Amritsar is now a sweet memory…but any time I want to fill my home with that Punjabi zest and vigour, I have a way…this super tasty Fish Kabab is sure to make one high on food …and who knows …maybe you would want to break into a Bhangra after eating it!!
For the rice
Basmati Rice : 1 cup.
Butter : 2 tblesp.
Garlic : 6 flakes, chopped fine.
Chilli flakes : 1/2 tsp.
Soup cube : 1.
Carrot; 1 small, chopped fine.
Capsicum: 1/2 chopped fine.
Salt to taste.
For the Kabab
Fish : 250 gms. Choose firm white fish. I chose Kalanji/ Asian seabass which I got cut into approx I inch cubes. Wash fish thoroughly and keep aside.
Hung Curd : 2 tblesp. You can line a strainer with a thin cloth and put curds to it and allow to stand for an hour allowing the water to drain out.
Ginger-Garlic paste : 1 tblesp. I used 5-6 garlic cloves and 1 inch pc ginger and made a paste by passing through the microplane.
Kasoori Methi : 1 tsp. Crush with your fingers and add.
Chilli pdr : 1 tsp.
Coriander pdr : 1/2 tsp.
Jeera/ Cumin pdr : 1/2 tsp.
Garam masala pdr : 1/2 tsp.
Salt to taste.
Oil : 1 tsp.
Butter : 1 tsp.
Lime juice : 2 tsps.
Onion: 1, cut into I inch cubes and separate layers.
Capsicum : 1, cut into 1 inch cubes.
- Marinate the cleaned fish with lime juice and salt and keep in a bowl for 10 mins.
- Prepare the marinade with the ginger-garlic paste, chilli, coriander, jeera, garam masala pdrs, kasoori methi, salt and the curd.
- Squeeze the fish as you take it out from the lime marinade and place in another big bowl with marinade paste and the onions and capsicum. Add the oil and mix the marinade well into the fish. Keep covered for 1/2 an hr.
- Skewer the fish alternating with the onion and capsicum.
- Place a heavy bottomed frying pan on heat and once hot, place the skewers. Baste the Kababs as they cook on heat with some butter.
- Turn the kababs carefully in the pan allowing all sides to roast well. When done take off gas.
For the Rice…
- Cook the rice in 4 cups of water in which some salt and a soup cube is added. When the rice is just about done, strain it and keep.
- Place a large fry pan on heat and add the butter. Add the chopped garlic and fry till it starts to turn brown. Add the chilli flake and give a quick stir.
- Add the chopped vegetables and the cooked rice and stir well. Add salt and keep stirring for 3 to 4 mins till everything is nicely combined. Your butter garlic rice is now ready.
Serve the Kababs on neatly stacked rice in a seving plate.