Being a Bengali, it is but obvious that I love fish and thanks to my all my travels, I developed a taste for the fresh Mandeli fish (not dried) in Mumbai.
The Mandeli fish is slightly bigger than the regular Puti Maach or Morola Maach that we Bengalis usually have. In this case, the Mandeli is bought whole from the market, the scales are cleared with a bothi or a knife and the head removed with all the other grime.
Apply salt, chilli and turmeric powder and leave it aside for an hour to marinate in all the spices. Coat the Mandeli in suji or rawa and fry it in hot refined oil on a tava until crisp. The best part of frying Mandeli is, that this soft, tender and plump fish turns crisp when fried, which makes it even more delectable.
The Mandeli is a mouth watering accompaniment that goes well with Khichudi or a daal and rice combination. If you haven’t tried it out yet, then you must. But keep in mind that fresh Mandeli should have a pinkish tinge and no part of the body should be disfigured. If you are not sure of the quality of the fish, then ask your local fish vendor to help you procure good quality Mandeli.