Posted on: October 10, 2018 Posted by: Deepsikha Comments: 0
Katla Kalia

Katla is quite an economical freshwater fish and is easily available in Eastern and Northeastern part of India. It’s a kind of everyday fish in any Bengali household, along with Rohu, Tengra, Telapia, just to name a few. Though it’s a regular fish, it has a number of recipes and Kalia is the most famous one. This dish is quite biye bari style (the type that is usually served in Bengali wedding receptions) – it’s spicy and rich in taste. Although Katla is by far the popular choice for making Kalia, Rohu or Chitol can also be used and the process remains the same.

See Other Fish Recipes Here

Katla Kalia

Being a spicy food lover, I love Katla when it’s cooked spicy – so mostly I prepare Katla Macher Kalia or Katlar Jhaal. Bengalis across the world will swear by the name of this dish, I bet. As this dish travels from kitchen to kitchen, people add their touch and I am no exception. Kalia is a thick and spicy gravy based dish and goes brilliantly well with piping hot rice. While this is typically a Bengali fish curry, this is far different from Bengalis’ regular Macher Jhol or Macher Jhaal. We at our family have a special recipe of Macher Rosha which is similar to Kalia.

With all said and done here I present my recipe of Katla Macher Kalia with my little touch and with all my love 🙂 Please note that I bought 700 gm fish where I got 10 standard sized pieces (excluding head). In your case, the weight might vary depending on the size of the pieces.


  • 700 gm Katla (Rohu or Chitol can also be used)
  • 3/4 cup onion paste
  • 2 table-spoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 1/2 cup tomato puree
  • 3/4 cup yogurt, whisked
  • 4-5 green chilli. slitted
  • handful of raisin
  • 1 tea-spoon cumin powder
  • 1 tea-spoon coriander powder
  • 1.5 tea-spoon turmeric powder (1 + 1/2)
  • 1/2 tea-spoon red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tea-spoon Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1/2 tea-spoon garam masala powder
  • 2 table-spoon mustard oil + some more to fry fish
  • 1 cup warm water
  • salt, according to taste

For Tempering:

  • 1/2 tea-spoon cumin seed
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 5 clove
  • 5 green cardamom
  • 1 black cardamom


  • Rub the fish pieces with 1 tea-spoon turmeric powder and little salt. Heat required oil in a pan and fry the pieces till golden brownish. Remove and keep aside.
  • In the same pan toss the raisins until fluffy. Remove and keep aside.
  • Heat 2 table-spoon mustard oil in the same pan and temper with all the ingredients mentioned in For Tempering section. Allow them to splutter.
  • Add onion paste and saute until colour changes and water dries up.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste and sauté until raw smell goes off completely.
  • Now, add tomato puree, cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, kashmiri red chilli powder and salt. Stir until oil starts separating from the mixture.
  • Add yogurt and give a proper mix.
  • Add water, mix well and cover. Cook over medium flame until it comes to a boil.
  • Now, add fish pieces and raisin. Gently mix and add green chilli. Cover and cook over low to medium flame until fish pieces are nicely done and the gravy thickens.
  • Open the lid, sprinkle garam masala powder, give a gentle mix, turn off the flame.
  • Your Katla Kalia is ready to be served now.

Make your festive season more delightful including this traditional Bengali dish in your lunch/dinner platter. This dish is best served with hot steamed rice (gorom bhat). Do let me know how you like it by dropping me a comment below. You can also tag me on Instagram by using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks

Katla Kalia

Wish you have a dazzling festive season! Happy eating!


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