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Pepper Fish cooked in Banana leaves
This dish comes from the state of Assam in north east of India. Even though this area is not rich money wise but the food is tasty and rich. They have rich tradition of making delightful food and since it is home to the largest river of India The Brahmaputra, so Assamese cuisine does have lots of dishes made from fishes. This dish here is called Patot Diya. Patot Diya usually means food wrapped in Banana leaves and then cooked in over, or on grill or simply steamed. Most of the Assamese dishes use this technique.
- Small Fish ( any you like): 8
- Cumin Seeds: 1 Tsp.
- Onion Seeds: ½ Tsp.
- Pepper Corns: ½ Tsp.
- Garlic Paste: ½ Tsp.
- Turmeric: ¼ Tsp.
- Oil: 1 Tbsp.
- Banana leaf : 1
- Making Banana leaf: Select long banana leaf. Make sure it has no split. Trim this leaf along central spine of the leaf. Now wash this leaf thoroughly and let it dry slightly. Dry it by putting its shiny side over the low flame and sliding it for few seconds till it is pliable and can be used.
- Now grind the pepper, cumin and onion seeds in very little water to make a fine paste. Use grinder for it.
- Now add garlic paste and turmeric to it and mix well.
- Now apply this mixture and salt over the fish to marinate.
- Leave fish for 20 to 30 minutes to marinate.
- Place fish over the banana leaf.
- Dazzle fish with oil and fold the leaf to make a parcel.
- Put a tooth pick through the leaf and fish so the leaf does not unfold.
- Take a pan and heat over medium heat.
- Place the leaf with fish in it in the pan and heat.
- Turn over couple of times.
- The leaf would char as fish cooks.
- This would give a smoky aroma to the fish.
- Enjoy it with rice.
If you do not want to char the leaf then steam the fish in a steamer. Enjoy with rice.
Fish ready to be steamed or cooked in banana leaf
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