Thirukkai meen kuzhambu – Paravai Muniamma style

Paravai Muniyamma is known for her village recipes from southern Tamilnadu even though she is a famous singer. She hosts a Sunday afternoon show in which she quickly whips up snacks, vegetarian and non-veggie dishes. What I like the most out of her’s is the ingredients that go into the dish. You can imagine the aroma that would rise when the dish is cooking. She grinds the pastes required in a stone grinder and cooks in earthernware which would definitely add the distinctness for any dish.

Also at the end she would sing a nice folk song about the dish and about the person she would invite to taste it. Last week she demonstrated Thirukkai meen (Whip tail sting ray fish) kuzhambu. Amma had made this umpteem number of times during my pregnancy and lactation days but she cannot wait to make it again in Muniamma’s way.

And what to say, we had a treat 😉

And I am giving the recipe below. No changes to the recipe!

Ingredients needed :

Thirukkai fish (cleaned and cut in to 3 inch squares) – 1/2 KG

Small onions – 20

Garlic pods – 20

Tomato – 1 big chopped

Tamarind – 1 medium sized lemon soaked with 1 teaspoon of salt in 4 glass of water for 15 minutes

Gingelly oil – 4 T spoon

Vadagam – 1 T spoon for taalipu

To be ground to a paste:

Black peppercorn – 3 T spoon

Red chillies – 6

Cumin – 2 T spoon

Coriander seeds – 4 T spoon

A little piece of kombu manjal or 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder

First take all the ingredients for the paste and grind it to a smooth paste with little water. Squeeze the soaked tamarind to get all the extract and then filter it in a colander. In the tamarind liquid mix the ground paste and well.

In a thick bottomed vessel heat the gingelly oil and once hot add the vadagam. Let it turn golden brown and add the garlic pods. Saute till they turn golden and add the small onions and saute till they turn pinkish. Add the tomatoes and cook till they turn mushy. Add the tamarind-masala mix now and mix well. Check for salt now and add if required more. Let it boil for 10 minutes. Add the fish pieces and cover the vessel with the lid. Let it cook for another 10 minutes and by this time the oil will get separated. Garnish with coriander leaves. This is a thick gravy like kulumbu and the fragrance it spread the whole house when boiling is extra ordinary. The ingredients and their quantity might sound that this is a fiery kuzhambu but actually not. The coriander seeds and the mixing of the paste in the tamarind liquid actually mellows the pepper’s hot taste.

Thanks to Paravai Muniamma for this wonderful recipe!


12 comments on “Thirukkai meen kuzhambu – Paravai Muniamma style

  1. I have seen Thirukkai meen in fish market. Really huge and very popular for the tail too 🙂 Never tasted the fish even we re big fish fan… Looks tasty the gravy.

  2. I nevere knew about this fish. Btw paravai muniamma is she stll doing on sun tv ? can u pls tell me what time – i am not able to see her on sun tv. Thats the only tv i have access to here in US.

  3. looks yummy..Long since i had fish:(

  4. I never heard about thirukkai fish before. I love paravai muniamma style cooking so authentic . Looks very delicious.

  5. wow!!!i love anything made with fish…urs look soooooo yummy and delicious!!!makes me drool:)

  6. Wow! Looks great, Nirmala. I have the same question as Revathi. Is paravai muniyamma still on suntv?
    Sorry dear. Thats a mistake. She hosts similar program in the same timing in Kalaignar TV. I have corrected it in the post.

  7. hi,
    is sting ray fish edibile for sure? is there any special reason for giving it during pregnancy.Love to hear from you.
    the gravy looks yummy…
    Yes its edible if you could get it in the fish market. It gives a lot of strenght to u’re hip bones which is very important during pregnancy. and also it increases lactation

  8. What paravai paati now in Kalaignar TV ? romba dhrogam paatiii.. Engalakku inga access illaye 😦

  9. I used to see her show sometimes when I was in Chennai and loved her typical accent and stories and the songs…used to make the dishes all the more appetizing – this dish looks as earthy as they come!

  10. Please let me know any other chicken recipes by Paravai Muniyamma

    Thank You

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