Chepa Pulusu (Andhra Mess Style)


Chepa Pulusu is a tangy fish gravy famous in Andhra Pradesh. (Chepa – Fish, Pulusu – Tangy Tamarind gravy) This preparation is similar to our Tamilian Meen Kuzhambu but very spicy made with plain red chilli powder which gives that nice red colour to curry.Andhra Mess — is a fast food chain like restaurant spread all over Southern India, serving authentic Andhra food. Mostly its menu includes big mountain of hot steaming rice with khatti pappu, spicy paruppu podi, pickles, variety of veg and non-veg curries. This recipe of mine is for one such dish, popular in Andhra Mess menu. Authentic Pulusu preparation does include Copra (dry coconut), but most of the mess add coconut milk to their gravy to feed a large crowd. Friends, this dish is guaranteed finger licking good!!!Chepa gravy / Fish Curry / Chepa Curry / Meen Kuzhambu / Kolumbu / Kulambu / Machli Curry / Machali

2 nos Fish fillets (or 1/4 kg fish of your choice)
4 nos Onion (finely chopped)
½ tsp Ginger garlic paste
1 no Tomato (diced)
3 nos Green chili (finely chopped)
½ tsp Turmeric powder
1 tsp Red chili powder
1 tsp Coriander /dhania powder
½ tsp Jaggery (powdered)
5 tbsp Diluted tamarind juice
¼ cup Thick coconut milk
1 tsp Salt (or to taste)
4 tbsp Oil
½ tsp Mustard
½ tsp Cumin seeds
¼ tsp Fenugreek seeds
2 stks Coriander leaves (for garnishing)
10 nos Curry leaves
¼ tsp Asafoetida powder


Clean the fish, cut into desired size and marinate with little turmeric and keep aside. Heat oil in a pan, splutter mustard, cumin, fenugreek seeds and curry leaves. Sprinkle the asafoetida followed by finely chopped green chilies. Let them sizzle and then add chopped onions and fry until golden and translucent. Add the ginger garlic paste and saute for few minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook until soft. Now add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder and fry until the masala leaves the sides. (At this stage make sure the masala is well cooked, as we are looking for a very soft sauce consistency which should literally melting). Add the tamarind juice along with 1 cup water, jaggery and salt. When it comes to one boil, add the fish pieces, cover and cook over low flame for 10 minutes. Now add the coconut milk, garnish with coriander leaves and simmer for few minutes. Serve hot with hot steaming rice.





Choice of Fish : Salmon, King fish, Tilapia, Cat fish, Mackeral.

Yields : 4 Servings approx.

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