Polao or Pulao originated in Persia where meat was used with rice. As it moved east towards Bengal region, fish was used instead of meat. For the Bengali Polao we have used Vhetki fish. But other types of fish like Salmon or bass, can be used as well.
You will need the following ingredients for making the fish Polao.
1. First wash the Basmati rice with water and leave it soaking in that same water for an hour.
2. Add a half cup of vegetable oil to a medium hot pan.
3. When the oil heats up, add the ginger paste.
4. Add the coriander powder.
5. The cumin powder.
6. MiAdd the garlic paste.
7. The turmeric powder.
8. Methi powder.
9. Fry this mixture for about a minute.
10. Add salt.
11. Mix again
12. Add the fish to the pan.
13. Fry for about 2 minutes.
14. Then flip the pieces of fish over
15. Continue frying for several more minutes
16. Add 1 cup of water and mix the gravy.
17. Cover the pan and let the fish cook.
18. Flip the fish occasionally so that both sides get evenly cooked.
19. Continue boiling the fish in the gravy for about 5 more minutes
20. Then remove the pieces and set them aside.
21. Save the spicy gravy in a bowl for use later.
22. Maintain the same level of heat on the stove
23. And add one third cup of oil to the pan.
24. Add the sliced onion
25. Fry it till it is golden brown.
26. Take your bowl of rice, strain the water and add it to the onions in the pan.
27. Mix well and then fry the mixture for several more minute.
28. Add the cocoanut
30. Add the spicy fish gravy.
31. Mix again
32. Add 2 cups of water.
33. Cover the pan
34. Stir the rice occasionally so that it does not burn.
35. Cover the pot again
36.Continue this process till the rice is soft.
37. When the rice is done, spread the fish over the rice.
38. Cover the pan and leave the polao on the stove for several more minutes to allow for
the flavor of fish and spices infuse the rice.
This completes the fish polao preparation.
It serves 3 – 4 people and takes about 45 minutes to prepare.
It’s best served hot.