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Fish Pulau with Sai Bhaji and Carrot & Cucumber Raita

  • Serves 4 - 6
  • Difficult

It is a versatile dish – the fish can easily be replaced with chicken, prawns or mixed vegetables to suit a variety of palate.


How old were you when you started cooking? I started learning cooking from my mom when I was maybe about 10 years old.

Personal wish related to cooking: I wish to continue cooking for my family.

Seema Melwani , A cook with love for food


  • For Fish Pulau

    4 fillets tengiri fish

    2 cups rice, washed

    2 onions, sliced lengthwise

    1 tomato, chopped

    2 full cardamoms

    1 cinnamon stick

    2 tsp coriander powder

    2 tsp garam masala

    ½ tsp cumin seeds

    ½ tsp ginger-garlic paste

    3-4 pcs bay leaves

    4-5 cups water

    Oil for cooking

    Salt, to taste

  • For Sai Bhaji

    1 bunch spinach

    ½ cup gram dhal (channa dhal)

    1 medium onion

    1 medium potato

    1 medium carrot

    4 medium tomatoes

    4-5 french beans

    ½ inch ginger, cut finely

    ½ tsp cumin seeds

    ½ tsp turmeric powder

    1 tsp garlic, cut finely for tempering

    Oil for cooking

    Green chillies, to taste

    Salt, to taste

  • Carrot & Cucumber Raita

    1 bowl yoghurt

    1 carrot, grated

    ½ cucumber, grated

    ¼ tsp cumin powder

    ¼ tsp red chilli powder

    Coriander leaves, cut finely

    Green chillies, cut finely, to taste

    Salt and pepper, to taste


    Fish Pulau

    1. Heat oil in a pan.
    2. Add the sliced onions and fry till golden brown. Make sure they do not burn.
    3. Once the onions start browning, add in all the cumin seeds, cardamoms and ginger-garlic paste, along with half a cinnamon stick and 2 bay leaves.
    4. Continue to fry until fragrant and the onions are golden brown.
    5. Add the chopped tomatoes.
    6. Season with salt, coriander powder and 1 tsp garam masala.
    7. Cover and cook till the tomatoes are soft.
    8. Add the fish fillets and coat them well with the gravy.
    9. Cover the pan and let the fish simmer for 10 minutes until cooked.
    10. Remove the fish from the gravy and place in a separate dish.
    11. Add the remaining 1 tsp garam masala, half cinnamon stick and 2 bay leaves to the gravy. Mix well.
    12. Add the rice and adequate water for the rice to cook.
    13. Cover and let cook till the water is absorbed and the rice is ready.
    14. To serve, put the hot rice on a plate. Top with a fillet of fish and serve with Sai Bhaji and Raita.

    Sai Bhaji

    1. Soak the gram dhal for an hour.
    2. Wash and cut all the spinach and vegetables finely.
    3. Heat oil in a pot and add the cumin seeds.
    4. Fry till the seeds splatter.
    5. Add all the ingredients, except garlic.
    6. Season to taste and mix well.
    7. Cover and leave to cook until the gram dhal and vegetables are cooked.
    8. Mash the vegetables roughly to blend them together.
    9. Heat 2 tsp oil in a smaller frying pan.
    10. Add the garlic and fry till fragrant.
    11. Pour the hot garlic oil over the spinach and vegetable mixture.
    12. Mix well and serve hot.


    1. Mix the yoghurt well to remove any lumps.
    2. Season the yoghurt to taste with salt and pepper and add in the cumin powder.
    3. Add the carrots, cucumber, green chillies and coriander leaves.
    4. Mix all the ingredients well.
    5. Serve cold in a bowl and sprinkle red chilli powder on the top for garnish.