Hilsa Pulao Recipe


  • 2 cups Basmati Rice
  • A Bayleaf
  • 6 cups Water
  • 500 gm Hilsa Fish
  • 1 tbsp Cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp Garam Masala
  • Salt & Chilli as per taste
  • 1 tbsp Coriander powder
  • 4 tbsp Peanuts, roasted, ground


  1. Cut the Hilsa fish into half inch thick steaks.
  2. Wash and semi dry the basmati rice.
  3. Grind the ginger, onions and garlic to a paste.
  4. Mix the onion-ginger-garlic paste and a little salt and marinate the fish for 1 hour.
  5. Heat the ghee in a pan until very hot.
  6. Reduce heat and fry the green cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon and bayleaf till they are fragrant.
  7. Add the fish and marinade and fry for another 3 minutes.
  8. Lower heat, add half a cup of hot water and cook for another few minutes on moderately high heat. The water should have evaporated and the fish cooked.
  9. Remove the fish and set aside. Leave the gravy in the pan.
  10. Add rice to the pan and cook on high heat until it changes color.
  11. Add 3 cups of hot water, salt and stir well. Let it come to the boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for 10-12 minutes. The rice should be almost done but still moist.
  12. Remove the rice and butter the pan well. Layer it with rice and fish alternately beginning and ending with rice. Cover with a tight fitting lid. bake the pulao in a preheated oven (300F/150C) oven for 15 minutes.
  13. Serve hot with raita and salad.

Tip: Grill fish to remove excess fat and add flavour.

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