Meen Moilee

As is common in most typical South Indian households, I’ve grown up eating fantastic fish and rice at home. It was a bi-weekly affair, if not more. But Meen Moilee was always extra special. It was a once in a month indulgence, something my mom would make on Sunday mornings and serve with hot, fluffy, white appams, and we’d all be running to the kitchen to catch the appams off the appam “chatti” while they were still steaming. It’s a recipe I’ve tried to perfect over the years, and I haven’t stopped making it since! The beauty of it is in the simplicity of the ingredients, well rounded up to make a delicious mouthful.


  • 400 gms Cleaned White Pomfret Fillet
  • 1 Coconut Freshly Grated
  • 2 Onions (Large, Sliced)
  • 1 Tomato (Large, Sliced)
  • 1/2-inch Ginger (Cut into Juliennes)
  • 3 – 4 Green Chillies (Slit in Half)
  • 5 – 6 Curry Leaves
  • 1/2 Tsp Fenugreek Seeds
  • 2 Pods Green Cardamom
  • 1 Tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Coconut Oil
  • Salt – To Taste


Prep: 20 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes

  1. Start by making coconut milk. Add 1 cup of hot water to the grated coconut and blend at a high speed in a blender. Strain this through a muslin cloth and keep it aside. This becomes the thick extract.
  2. Put the coconut back into the blender, add 2 cups of hot water and blend again. Repeat the same process and keep aside. This becomes the second extract.
  3. In a heavy-bottomed pan (preferably a clay pot” manchatti” if you have one), add coconut oil.
  4. Once hot, add in the fenugreek seeds and green cardamom pods. Once the fenugreek seeds brown lightly, throw in the curry leaves.
  5. After the curry leaves splutter, add in the sliced onions, Sauté until translucent.
  6. Next, add the ginger and chillies, and sauté lightly. Note that the onions shouldn’t colour at all.
  7. Once the aromatics make your surroundings smell delicious, add in the turmeric, thin coconut milk and salt.
  8. Place the fish fillets gently and let them simmer.
  9. Add in the thick coconut milk once the fish is cooked, and finish with the tomato slices. After adding the tomato slices, the curry should only be simmered for 2 minutes at the most.
  10. Serve hot with appams/idiyappam/steamed rice!