The coastal regions in Western India revel in seafood preparations usually prepared with thick, spicy hot & tangy and rich masala spice pastes with fresh coconut and tamarind.
What makes this fish uniquely special is that is it is infused in a wonderful and refreshing fresh herb paste marinade and finished with a perfect crust of semolina and rice flour.
Traditionally, an all semolina (suji) or an all rice flour coating is used but I prefer to use of half semolina and a half rice flour blend because I think that an all semolina coating renders the crust too crusty that it takes away from the tender flakiness of the fish while an all rice flour coating is just too soft.
The fish is first rubbed with salt to remove excess moisture which gives for firmer fish pieces. Kokum pods are placed over the fish to remove the any unpleasant or 'fishy' smell. Kokum is a fruit that belongs to the Mangostene family and indigenous to the mountainous Western Ghats of Western India. The fruit is dried and used for its tartness in dals and gravies as a substitute for tamarind and lime juice.
All in all, this pan-fried fish is just a delicious treat, especially hot off the stove and can be eaten as-is as a snack or as in a long tradition of comfort foods, with Amti dal and rice for a complete meal.
Either way, you're going to want to add this one to your must-make list.