Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Muro Lau


Squash with Fish Bones


I remember Mum making this for us. She is such an inspiration to us all! She had such a zest for life and enjoyed cooking till the last and was so willing to share her recipes. I've tried to reproduce this as best my memory will allow.

Fish bones are available in any oriental market that sells live and fresh fish.  The bones that are left over from filleting fish are packaged and sold separately.  Fish heads may be included among the fish bones.  I recently purchased a package of Garupa/Grouper fish bones which was used in this recipe. Marinating the fish bones in garlic paste, turmeric and salt removes the fishy smell.  

The green chilies are of a tiny Thai variety that I grew in a container on my front porch. When the weather got too cold I had to harvest the remaining chilies on the plant so I froze them in a ziploc bag and have been using them ever since. If left to ripen on the plant, the chilies turn a bright red.

Chayote squash may be replaced with Lau/Lauki (Bottle Gourd) or Zucchini.

Ingredients:

3 chayote squash, peeled & julienned

Marinate for ½ hour: 
1 pkg. (1½ lbs.) fish bones, cut in pieces
1 Tbsp. garlic paste
½ tsp. turmeric
Salt 

Gravy:
1 cup hot water
1 Tbsp. ginger paste
1 cup hot water
½ tsp. roasted cumin powder
Salt to taste

Aromatics:
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 green chili, chopped
¼ tsp. cumin seeds or Shah Jeera
¼ tsp. black mustard seeds

Garnishes:
4 green chilies
2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
½ tsp. garam masala powder
1 tsp. ghee

Method:
1.    Marinate fish bones in garlic paste, salt and turmeric for ½ hour.
2.    Bring water to boil & simmer gravy ingredients on low heat until needed.
3.    Heat oil in a pan and pan-fry fish bones until golden; set aside.
4.    In the same oil, fry aromatics, stir in squash and cook until soft.
5.    Add simmering gravy and fish bones, cover and cook until oil resurfaces.
6.    Garnish with garam masala powder, green chilies, cilantro and ghee.
7.    Serve on a bed of hot Basmati rice.

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Chumkie.