Herring fish fry

Herring fish is similar like sardine(mathi meen in tamil), often people get confused for sardine and herring fish. When they are young and small, these fish are called as sardine(mathi meen in tamil) and when they are older and big they are called as herring fish. Herring fish is not as popular as sardine. Can get from any local fish mongers or in super stores. I got this from tesco, very fresh fish. I love to try different types of fish and their taste. The only problem with this fish is bones, can view in the picture it has lots of tiny bones, can debone the fish and use it as a fillet, but I have cooked it with bones. I bought 1kg of herring fish and made fish curry and shallow fry, which was tasty for me. Can use sea bass, tilapia, mackerel, king fish or any fish you like.

Herring and sardines(Mathi meen in tamil) are very good for us because they provide high level of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, essential fats that also play an important role in normal brain development and function. People with high cholesterol, diabetes, breast cancer, memory loss, depression, may also benefit from the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil.


  • Herring Fish - 500 gms
  • Wheat flour (optional) - 3 tsp (pillsbury, used for chapathi)
  • Chilli powder – 1 tsp
  • Pepper powder – 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 2 tsp
  • Salt as per taste
  • Oil – 1 tsp
  • Lemon juice – 1 tbsp
  • Water - 3 to 4 tbsp as per requirement
  • Oil for frying
  • Can use other marinades which I have shown you in my previous fish fry recipes



  • Take a wider bowl or a plate and add all the ingredients to form a good thick paste of it like wheat flour, chilli powder, salt, turmeric powder and all, mix well, then add water and make it like a thick paste but not very tight and dry.
  • You can keep the fish whole or cut into halves.
  • Apply on fish, the marinate should coat the fish well.
  • Keep it in the fridge for more than 2hrs covered with a lid or cling film.
  • While frying take it 1/2hr in advance and then fry it.
  • Frying the fish

  • Preheat the pan or kadai with sufficient oil for shallow frying, when hot add marinated fish pieces one by one, fry it in batches.
  • Do not turn the fish immediately; otherwise the coating will come out.
  • After few minutes turn the fish pieces, give 3 to 4min time gap.
  • Cook the fish till it is cooked well, the coating becomes a dark reddish colour and crispy also.
  • In between turn the fish and fry it. Fry the fish evenly. Do not turn the fish many times also. The fish gets cooked fast.
  • When the fish is cooked it becomes firm.
  • Fry all fish pieces in batches and when finished put it in a bowl or plate.
  • It will take 10 to 12min to fry according to its size and cook it on medium heat.
  • Serve it with rice and fish curry or simple rasam or dal.


  • Try to use tong for turning the fish.
  • When the fish is cooked on one side, and then only turn the fish.
  • Can fry the fish on tava also, see my previous fish fry recipe.
  • When the oil is hot then only put the fish on tava, other wise if it is cold, the masala will get stick to the pan and come out.
  • Cook it on medium heat not very high, once the oil is hot.

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