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Indian Fish Fry

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If you can get it, this Indian fish fry is delicious with silver pomfret.

Whenever I go to London, which isn’t often, I bring a car fridge and stock up on fresh silver pomfret.

That is the fish I used in Goa when I first made this Indian fish fry and I love it.

You could use other fish too such as sea bass and bream but the delicate flavour and texture of silver pomfret is my all time favourite.

Indian fish fry

This easy recipe could be made with any fish. I like pomfret the best though.

Working ahead…

There really isn’t much to do.

If you would like to cut the fins and head off and make those shallow slits, you can do that a day or so ahead of time.

You could also gather up your spices but as there are so few, there really isn’t much need.

Make this Indian fish fry recipe your own…

To be honest, I calmed this one down a bit for the blog.

I prefer the fish to be much spicier and use more Kashmiri chilli powder.

You could also use more lime juice. It adds a lot. Of course the amount of salt you use in any Indian fish fry is completely up to you. 

Step by step photographs

Preparing pomfret

Slice off the fins and make shallow slits in the body on both sides.

Rubbing spices on fish

Rub the spices, garlic and ginger paste, lime juice and salt all over the fish.

Coating fish with semolina

Dredge the fish in the semolina and shake off any excess.

Frying fish

Carefully place the fish in the hot oil and fry for about 4 minutes per side.

Frying pomfret

Ensure the oil isn’t too hot. You just want to brown the exterior and make it crispy.

Finsihed Indian fish fry

Place on paper towels before serving to soak up any excess oil.

If you like this Indian fish fry recipe, you might like to try some of these too…

Alleppey fish fry
Easy prawn curry
Prawn Puri
Keralan Fish Curry

fried pomfret

Dig in!

Yield: 2

Indian Fish Fry

Indian fish fry
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes


  • 2 x 600g (21oz) silver pomfret or other fish of your choice
  • 1 generous tbsp Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp salt plus more to taste
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1 tbsp garlic and ginger paste
  • 200g (1 cup) semolina
  • 5 tbsp coconut or rapeseed oil


  1. Clean the pomfret or ask your fish monger to do this for you. Be sure to cut off all the fins, tail and head and remove the gills.
  2. Make shallow slices on each side of the fish. This will both speed up cooking and ensure the spices get right into the meat of the fish.
  3. Rub the fish all over with the ground spices, garlic and ginger paste and lime juice and allow to marinate for about 20 minutes.
  4. When ready to cook, heat up the oil in a large non-stick pan. I only had a small pan so I fried them separately.
  5. Dredge the fish in the semolina and be sure to shake off any excess. Then place the fish in the pan and cook for about 4 minutes per side or until crispy and golden brown.
  6. Transfer to paper towels to soak up any excess oil and serve immediately. These are good served simply with additional lime wedges.

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I hope you enjoy this Indian fish recipe. If you do give it a try, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you. 

Calogero Mira

Saturday 15th of December 2012

The lemon trees in my garden are giving their fruits for this sauce. Nice sea bass recipe with a shallot and tandoori masala.

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