One pot sprats with potatoes and tomato. This is a special dish. One I grew up with. One adored by my siblings and me. It’s one that reminds me of home, as a child and the burst of flavour when it was served onto our plates.
It’s one that reminds me of my mum, my dad and where my love of sprats was born.
It’s one that everytime I cook I think of my siblings because I know they will be lost in nostalgia just like me.
It’s one that will always be comforting.
It’s one I wish my late mum was cooking just one more time again.
Sprat fish was readily available in the 70’s in the Uk when I first learnt about fish. It was one that came home as it was a nod and homage to the small fish my family missed from their native homeland. Similar but never the same.
Nonetheless it was oily and reminiscent of the small fish eaten frequently in Bengal.
As sprats are delicate fish, it’s cooking takes care and diligence. This one pot is easy, simple and just mainly prep, temper and cooking. Nothing could be easier! No tedious frying, splatter or odour!
It’s a semi dry dish, the burst of sauce comes from the tomatoes which cuts the oily richness of the sprats. The potatoes add the creaminess on your palate and the fish holds together but imparts lots of flavour.
I adore it…its a great way to enjoy sprats In a curry with little effort.
1/2 a tray of sprat fish. Cleaned.
1 potato finely sliced
2 salad tomatoes finely sliced.
4 finely chopped green chillies
1 tbsp brown Mustard seeds
1 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tsp Chilli powder
1 tbsp Cumin powder
1 tsp Paprika or kashmiri chilli powder
5 tbsp Oil
Cut the sprats In half if they are largish or leave whole if small.
Slice your potatoes so they are half cm thick.
In a bowl add your cleaned fish, tomatoes, sliced potatoes, fresh chillies, powdered spices and salt.
Gently mix everything together.
Now take a non stick pan.
Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds untill they become aromatic and splutter.
Add the marinaded mix and cover.
Now take 1 cup of water and rinse the marinade bowl and add the water to the pan. Don’t mix/stir too much…I just swirl the pan and turn over once half way!
Gently fold and cover. Cook on med/low till the potatoes are cooked soft. The tomatoes should be soft and you should have a little sauce with a little oil splitting too.
If required add a little more water if potatoes need more cooking. Don’t forget the dish will continue to absorb more water after cooking.
You should be left with a semidry curry. Garnish with coriander if you wish.
Serve with rice.
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