Varutharacha Mathi Curry / Sardines in Roasted Coconut Gravy


8-10 medium sized sardines / mathi
1 cup grated coconut
1 piece ginger, finely chopped
4 green chillies, slit
6 shallots, chopped
2 tbsp kashmiri chilli powder
1 1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp fenugreek powder
3-4 gambooge/ kudampuli pieces
few curry leaves
salt to taste
2- 2 1/2 tbsp oil


  1. Clean and cut sardines into medium pieces.
  2. Heat a frying pan and add the grated coconut and dry roast on medium flame until light golden.
  3. Add chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and fenugreek powder, mix well for a minute and remove from flame.
  4. Then grind it to a smooth paste adding little water and keep it aside.
  5. Heat 1 1/2 tbsp coconut oil in a pan/ clay pot and add chopped shallots, ginger, green chillies, curry leaves and saute well for 2 minutes until the raw smell disappears.
  6. Add the ground coconut paste, gambooge, salt and enough water and allow it to boil.
  7. When the gravy boils, add cleaned sardines and swirl the pan to mix everything well. 
  8. Cover and cook on medium flame till the gravy thickens and the fish is done.
  9. When oil starts to appear on top, add few curry leaves and 1/2-1 tbsp coconut oil and switch off the flame. Keep it covered for 10 minutes and then serve with rice/ mashed tapioca



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