Crispy Meen Varuval Recipe: How to Make Authentic South Indian Fish Fry

Crispy Meen Varuval Recipe: How to Make Authentic South Indian Fish Fry..

Preparing Meen Varuval (Fish Fry) is a delightful culinary adventure that promises a burst of flavors and textures. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to prepare this iconic South Indian dish:


  • 500 grams of fish (preferably pomfret, kingfish, or mackerel), cleaned and cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons of red chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon of coriander powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons of ginger-garlic paste
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon juice
  • 2 sprigs of curry leaves
  • 2 tablespoons of rice flour (optional, for added crispiness)
  • Oil for shallow frying


  1. Marinate the Fish:
    • In a mixing bowl, combine the cleaned and cut fish pieces with red chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, ginger-garlic paste, lemon juice, and salt to taste.
    • Gently massage the marinade into the fish pieces, ensuring they are evenly coated. Allow the fish to marinate for at least 30 minutes to absorb the flavors.
  2. Heat Oil for Shallow Frying:
    • In a wide frying pan or skillet, heat enough oil for shallow frying over medium heat. The oil should be hot enough to sizzle when you add the fish pieces.
  3. Coat the Fish with Rice Flour (Optional):
    • If desired, you can coat the marinated fish pieces with rice flour before frying. This helps in achieving a crispy texture. Simply sprinkle rice flour over the fish pieces and gently toss to coat evenly.
  4. Fry the Fish:
    • Once the oil is hot, carefully place the marinated fish pieces in the pan, making sure not to overcrowd them. Fry the fish in batches if necessary.
    • Fry the fish pieces on one side for about 3-4 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Then, carefully flip them over using a spatula and fry the other side until golden brown and cooked through.
    • While frying, add a few curry leaves to the hot oil for added flavor and aroma. Remove the fried fish pieces from the oil and drain excess oil by placing them on a plate lined with paper towels.
  5. Serve Hot:
    • Once all the fish pieces are fried to perfection, transfer them to a serving platter.
    • Garnish with fresh curry leaves and lemon wedges for an extra burst of flavor.
    • Serve the Meen Varuval hot with steamed rice, lemon wedges, and your favorite chutney or dipping sauce.

Enjoy the crispy and flavorful Meen Varuval as a standalone appetizer or as a delicious accompaniment to your South Indian meal. This classic fish fry is sure to delight your taste buds with its irresistible taste and aroma.

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