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Macher Matha Diye Mug Dal

BengaliFoodie's picture
Machher Matha Diye Mug Daal (Lentil with Fish Head) is a very popular Bengali recipe, which is served mainly on festive days or in any family get-together. The recipe tastes best with the fish head of Rohu fish. As for the lentil, use small sized split moong variety lentil, which is very common all over India.
Ingredients
  Split moog dal 200 Gram, lightly roasted in dry skillet
  Fish head 500 Gram, halved
  Ground ginger 1 Tablespoon
  Turmeric powder 1 Tablespoon
  Red chilli powder 1 Teaspoon
  Cumin powder 1 Tablespoon
  Onion 1 Large, finely chopped
  Garam masala powder 1 Teaspoon
  Green cardamom 4 , crushed
  Cinnamon stick 1 , crushed
  Cloves 4 , crushed
  Bay leaves 3
  Cumin seed 1 Teaspoon
  Tomato 1 Large, pureed
  Sugar 1 1⁄2 Teaspoon
  Green chilli 3 , slit lengthwise
  Dry red chili 2
  Mustard oil 1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs) (For deep frying)
  Salt To Taste
  Ghee 1 Tablespoon
Directions

GETTING READY
1) Wash the fish heads thoroughly and season with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ tablespoon turmeric powder. Keep aside.
2) In a bowl, soak the roasted lentil in sufficient hot water for 30 minutes.

MAKING
3) Boil the lentil in a saucepan by adding salt, according to your taste.
4) In a dry skillet, heat oil over high heat.
5) Fry the fish head halves, in both sides.
6) Drain extra oil and keep aside.
7) In the same oil, add cumin seeds, bay leaves, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and dry red chili to fry until it releases the flavor.
8) Add onion to sauté until translucent.
9) Add the tomato puree, ground ginger, turmeric powder, cumin powder and red pepper powder. Reduce the heat to medium and cook the spices all together for 5 minutes, until it releases oil.
10) Place the fried fish head in the skillet and break them in smaller pieces.
11) Cook the fish head for 5 minutes and combine with the spices.
12) Pour in the boiled lentil and mix well.
13) Add the green chili.
14) Simmer the lentil for another 5 minutes or until it reaches the preferred consistency.

FINALIZING
15) Transfer the preparation in a large bowl.
16) Sprinkle garam masala powder and spread ghee on top.
17) Cover the bowl with a lid and let it stand for 15-20 minutes, before you serve.

SERVING
18) Serve the daal with warm rice. Add a bowl of fresh salad on side.

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: 
Medium
Cuisine: 
Bengali
Course: 
Side Dish
Taste: 
Savory
Method: 
Boiled
Dish: 
Curry
Ingredient: 
Fish
Interest: 
Healthy
Preparation Time: 
10 Minutes
Cook Time: 
30 Minutes
Ready In: 
0 Minutes
Servings: 
10
Story
This is a popular recipe to serve during the Bengali marriage ceremony, particularly to the newly wed couples to test their patience and ability to eat the boney fish head properly. In my case, I could pass the test, however my husband failed very badly, by transferring the fish head to my plate.

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14 Comments

Meaty's picture
Wow.... feels lke the good times are here...this can drive ur taste buds crazy
Rashmi.vilas's picture
Wonderful blend of flavours from my favourite fish and lentils makes this traditional Bengali dish a must this pujas...
Anonymous's picture
Another Bengali delicacy... absolutely gorgeous and yummy...!! Friends, please try...!!
Anonymous's picture
Isn't it called murighonto by the people of Kolkata too?
Anonymous's picture
Hi, No Murighonto is a different preparation. I'll surely post that recipe here, sometime. Thanks - BengaliFoodie
healthy.food's picture
Bengali delicacy...absolutely fine to try this festive season.
Anonymous's picture
I love this steaming hot rice and chhachhra (a dry curry made with fish bones and head)!!!
delicious.bites's picture
Cant wait to visit Calcutta soon and have this all...
Gourmet.lover's picture
Being a bong, fish remains to be my ultimate food. This is a fabulous recipe, reminds me of my mother making this special dal.
shruti's picture
my Bong friends luv this..
bonappetit's picture
now thats what i call the authentic taste of bengal.....
Anonymous's picture
Never tried dal with fish! Nice way to use the fish head which is otherwise discarded.
ShakunS's picture
Got me plenty hungry! Maybe I'll get hold of one of my Bong friends and get her to make this for me ;)
choppednstewed's picture
Ha! My bengali husband-to-be is in for a surprise!!!