South Indian fish curry with chickpeas

South Indian fish curry with chickpeas

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(6 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 25 mins


Serves 2
This Keralan-inspired mackerel dish provides a hearty, deeply spiced supper with brain-boosting properties

Nutrition and extra info

  • Healthy

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal535
  • fat33g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs22g
  • sugars10g
  • fibre7g
  • protein41g
  • salt0.9g
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  • 1 tsp rapeseed oil
    Rapeseed oil

    Rapeseed oil

    If you want a light alternative to other cooking oils, rapeseed is a great choice and has…

  • 1 onion, halved and sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seed
  • ¼ tsp ground fenugreek
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes
  • ½ thumb-sized piece ginger, finely chopped



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 1 large garlic clove, finely grated
  • 400g can chopped tomato
  • 210g can chickpea, drained
  • ½ fish stock cube, crumbled
  • 2 tbsp tamarind paste (optional)



    A seed pod from the tamarind tree that is used extensively in South-East Asian and Indian…

  • 350g fresh mackerel, cut into thick pieces (or use boneless fillets if you prefer)


    Mackerel is a firm-fleshed, torpedo-shaped sea fish. Whole mackerel weigh in around 10-12oz (…

To serve

  • 250g pack cooked brown rice



    Rice is a grain, the seed of a type of grass, which is the most widely grown and the most…

  • 25g flaked almond
  • small bunch coriander, chopped


  1. Heat the oil in a wide, non-stick covered pan. Add the onion, put on the lid and cook for 5 mins, stirring occasionally, until golden. Add the whole and ground spices, the ginger and garlic, stir for about 30 secs to release their flavours, then pour in the tomatoes and a can of water, the chickpeas and stock cube. Cover and leave to cook for 20 mins.

  2. Stir in the tamarind (if using), add the mackerel, then cover and cook for 8 mins more. Meanwhile, heat the rice following pack instructions, then tip into a bowl and toss with the almonds and coriander. Serve with the curry.

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Comments, questions and tips

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yorkshirejen's picture
21st May, 2017
We followed other posters' advice on dramatically reducing the amount of tamarind to a scant teaspoon and we really enjoyed this. Also left out the chickpeas though and had spiced fried potatoes and spinach o nthe side, which was a nice contrast in texture to the soft fish curry. Would make this again.
28th Jan, 2017
Really disappointed with this curry... whilst what initially appealed to me was the mackerel, I think it was too strong a flavour and overpowered everything else...
Experienced cur...
21st Dec, 2015
I think this recipe would be improved with more chilli powder (about two teaspoons of the kind known as degi mirch in Indian grocery stores - bright red and medium-hot with a paprika flavour). A couple of sliced green chillies could be added when the mustard seeds pop. Two tablespoons of tamarind is far, far too much. Half a teaspoon of tamarind concentrate, dissolved in boiling water, is enough. There is no need to add chick-peas to a fish curry. That seems most peculiar to me. Instead of tinned tomatoes, which always make curries soupy, fresh tomatoes should be used. About 3 or 4 small ripe tomatoes, chopped or liquidized, will be about right.
23rd Jul, 2015
it was too sweet for me too, :9(
12th Jul, 2014
This curry is not very nice- the quantities of tamarind are waaay out making it far too sweet- we are some then threw the rest away. A waste of fish.
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