Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu


Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu is a ‘star’ dish very popular in top rated hotels and restaurants. Native to Allepey, this Kuttanadan fish preparation is unique and interesting. Cleaned Pearl spot fish or Karimeen is marinated with a blend of rich spicy masala and baked in a banana leaf. A favorite delicacy in Kerala cuisine, Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu always makes you crave for more. Here is the fish recipe you can prepare at home. Sauteed shallot masala mixture is spread on a banana leaf and a partially fried Karimeen is placed on top. One more layer of spicy masala is spread on top of fish and the banana leaf is folded into a packet. Tied with a string, these fish packets are cooked in a kadai in slow heat for 10 minutes. Enjoy the authentic Kerala taste. I love Karimeen fishes though there are lot of spiky bones. The taste and flavor of these type of fishes are just so real and authentic.

Kerala is a land of backwaters and you will find these of fishes in plenty here though they are heavily charged. Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu is an exotic dish served in top rated hotels and restaurants. It is mostly meant for tourists and this the reason why they are so exorbitantly charged. Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu can be easily prepared at home with limited ingredients. The spicy masala flavors sink deep into the flesh and that makes the dish so unique and special. Pearl Spot fishes are rich in healthy fats such as Omega 3 fatty acids which keep the brain and heart healthy. It is also a good source of protein and vitamins. I have enclosed a video here and you can check it for detailed illustration. You can explore a well detailed Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu recipe here.


Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu

Kerala Karimeen Pollichathu

Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Cuisine Kerala
Servings 2 people


For marinade:-


  • Clean fish and make cuts on it.
  • Mix pepper powder and salt, apply to the fish and keep for half an hour.
  • Pour 1 tsp of oil in a fry pan and shallow fry the fish turning both sides. Keep aside.
  • Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a kadai.
  • Saute chopped small onions.
  • When brown, add green chillies, curry leaves and ginger-garlic paste and saute again till its cooked.
  • Add coriander, chilly powder, turmeric powder and saute well.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and mix well till its cooked.
  • Add salt and mix well.
  • Add 1 tbsp of water and mix well.
  • :- You can use cocount milk instead of water for a better taste.
  • Divide it into 4 portions.
  • Take a banana leaf and gently heat it to make soft.
  • Keep one portion of the saute mixture on the leaf, keep the fried fish on top of it and spread one portion of the saute on the top of the fish.
  • Cover the fish with the leaf and tie with a thread.
  • Do the same with the second fish.
  • Keep the fish in a kadai and close it with a lid.
  • Cook it on a slow fire for 10 mins and gently turn it over and cook the other side.
  • :- Serve Karimeen Pollichathu hot with chappathis or rice.


You can discover an easy to prepare fish dish here Punjabi Fried Fish Masala. You can also visit this link for a fantastic Biriyani dish Fish Biriyani.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Response (7)
  1. j
    jacob December 9, 2008

    excellent receipe….

  2. M
    Manish July 31, 2010

    Used regular onions instead of small onions and it still turned out fabulous..Awesome recipe..

  3. M
    Mini December 29, 2009

    Used onion instead of shallots .Still turned out great.Great job..thanx for the awesome recipe.

  4. p
    priya raj February 16, 2009

    I made it for the first time and it turned out children and husband loved it.

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