Monday, July 2, 2012

Sardine Curry

Some of you may know my love for indian food, sardine curry is another favourite of mine at the banana leaf  restaurant. This is like sardine in tomato sauce but it's a little spicy and carries the taste of indian curry. It is quite different from the usual sardine dish that we can get from the indian mamak stall here, this is more towards a little sour and tangy in terms of flavour of the sauce. Even though this is not a very 'curry' type of curry., i still love it very much and it's very appetising for me. I think it would taste good on roti or any kind of flatbreads too.  If you think it may sounds appetising to you as well, then worth giving it a try ..especially if you are underweight probably will ask for more rice!

Recipe ( from South Indian Temptations by Devagi Shanmugam) with changes
1 can sardine in tomato sauce ( 475 gm), drained and reserve 3 heap tbsp tomato sauce from the can
3 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp fenugreek
1/2 tsp aniseed, coarsely pounded
1 onion, sliced
1 thumbsize of ginger, sliced
a sprig of curry leaves
21/2 tsps chilli powder
1tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp tamarind paste mixed with 1/2 cup of water
2 tomatoes
1 tsp curry powder
1tsp sugar
about 1 tsp of salt or to taste

1. Heat oil and add fenugreek and aniseeds and fry till fragrant.Add sliced onions, ginger, curry leaves and when they turn fragrant, all in the chilli powder, cumin powder, tomatoes, tamarind juice and curry powder.
2. Let them simmer for about 5 minutes, add in the sardines and the reserved tomato sauce from the can earlier and also 1/3 cup of water for more sauce and cook for another 5 minutes. Add in sugar and salt to taste.Remove from heat and serve.

If you like this dish, you may also like to see my blogger friend, Tigerfish doing a quite similar kind of sardine curry in her post here. Wishing everyone a happy monday!


  1. wah Lena, this dish looks delicious.. I was missing sardines for a long time & in fact I bot 2 cans last Fri:-D

  2. This sounds delicious. I love the added bite to this dish!

  3. My indian colleague cooks her sardine by addining in slices of potatoes too... and that makes it sardine curry with potatoes!

  4. I wouldn't have thought of using a can of sardines and making it into a curry! What a good idea. I'm going to be bookmarking this.

  5. I'm so hungry now, not yet taking my lunch, arghh!!

    I specially love sardine curry with capati, hehe~

  6. Haven't had this sardine curry for the longest time. Yours look..... slurp!

  7. This is the first time I come across sardine curry. Actually I don't like sardines but I love curry. So maybe I should give this a try.

  8. Lena,
    I really really LOVE Indian curry. This is super yummy!Even though i am not underweight (too shame to admit overweight lah..haha), i still can have many bowls of rice just with the sardine gravy :p
    I have all the ingredients except tomatoes!Gonna to cook now :D
    Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe :)

  9. when i run out of idea what to cook, i will cook this curry ^_^

  10. It's been ages since I had this mouth watering sardine curry! Yours looks so tempting & at first I thought you were using fresh sardines. Can sardine is even better! Now I wanna cook this for dinner. I should visit your blog more often to get some dinner idea! heheheh Love your blog ! :)

  11. I love this to go with thosai.

  12. I'm one of those people who will eat sardines at any given day ! lol Isn't it obvious that I love sardines ?! :D One of your yummiest dish yet ! Will try it sometime ....

  13. Wow! Never thought of 'upgrading' a can of sardines. Used to have that a lot when I was growing up. Your version looks absolutely delicious!

    BTW I have awarded you the much deserved Lovely Blog Award
    Check it out here:

  14. Interesting recipe and obviously I can also do the same thing with fresh sardines. Take care Diane

  15. Kami sekeluarga pu suka Curry sardin...makan dengan roti atau nasi.Yum yum...nanti Cm nak cuba resepi Lena ya:)

  16. The colour of this dish stands out so much,nice to have it with a bowl of white boiled rice for me!

  17. I love sardines. Whenever balik kampung my mother will make me sambal sardin with potato. I think I would certainly have 3 servings with your dish :).

  18. Lena, I love the idea of using the can sardines...much more versatile than from fresh sardines...
    Thanks for this recipe as it looks delicious :)
    Have a great week ahead!

  19. Love the spices you used and I have cooked similar dish before. However, sometimes when I really can't be bothered, some canned sardines + onions + fresh tomatoes can be still good too!

  20. Oh my goodness, this looks delicious! I love sardines, but I can never find recipes for them, so I just eat them right out of the can. This is perfect!

  21. Sedapnya! I have been craving for sardine curry for the last week! I was planning to make some when I checked in my pantry, there's no more canned sardine left! Looks delicious, Lena! Hey, only underweight can add rice-ah? What about the chubby ones??? ..... :0)

  22. Hello Lena, hru over there? I make canned mackerel curry the same way...adding potatoes. Your curry looks way too tempting and am right on my way there!!! :)

  23. Wow.. Lina, seems like u are a spice lover like me too.. many of ur dishes all seem hot !! Weather is especially cooling today due to a heavy downpour just now and this weather is just great for some HOT dishes like ur indian curry ... hehehe.... I shall have that for dinner later... :P

  24. eileen@hundred eighty degreesJuly 3, 2012 at 8:09 PM

    Hi Lena, so tempting! I haven't had my dinner yet, so hungry now....

  25. Lena, this would be perfect for some pasta!~ The sauce looks really saucy and great.

  26. My mom used to cook this dish for us. Seeing your mouth watering dish makes me miss my mom's cooking :( I hardly cook with sardine as Carlos is not a fan of it.

  27. I have the same book by Devagi. Tried the mutton chops in thick gravy and it came out v well (however I changed the method). It's a good book for Indian cooking. The curry looks goood:)

  28. Hi Lena, got roti prata or not? This sardine curry goes with prata very nice.

    But I seldom cook sardine at home unless I got nothing to cook. Not really fancy but prefer tuna.

    Have a nice day, regards.

  29. My hubby loves having sardine especially cooking with fried beancurd sheet & chili api. Yours sounds like another great choice too. Thanks for sharing it, Lena.
    enjoy your evening, dear.

  30. As I read how the dish is, tangy and sour with spicy kick...I can feel my mouth water. :P been ages since I had sardine.....think this dish might just be it! Yums!

  31. Lena, this sounds and looks so good! I never think to buy sardines. I really need to put them on my list. Is there one brand that is better to use over others?

  32. Since living in Melbourne, I have not eaten sardines in tomato sauce for a while. I love your addition of fenugreek and aniseed to transform a typical can sardine into this beautiful curry... Nice!

  33. I never knew we could cook sardines this way. I always thought I would just add onions and fry and that's all. Lovely dish!

  34. Drooling... Couldn't cook sardines nowadays because hubby has uric acid. Huhuhu... Made the steamed green tea cake and everyone likes it, especially my kids. Thanks :)

  35. So pretty and it looks like it's loaded with flavor!

  36. Oh have just the perfect sardine curry for eating this with chapatis..yumm..btw, i awarded you an check it out in my blog.

  37. This sure does sound like an appetizing dish, Lena. I know for sure Marion will love it. She LOVES sardines and doesn't even mind a bit of spice once in a while. I'm bookmarking this for sure!!!

    Thank you so much for sharing...

  38. Wow, Lena; looks like you and I are 'kindred spirits' ...really enjoying the same type of foods, and spices. I love sardines, in tomato sauce, or in olive oil. Sometimes I crave sardine sandwiches, which I make by chopping coaresly the sardines, and folding mayo, and chopped onion into it. So good!
    I would make this yummy dish in a 'heartbeat'...think I will!

  39. my husband thinks I am crazy for loving sardines as much as i do. he likes them but not loves them- that is after I make this for him! FANTASTIC

  40. mimi: maybe you would like to give this a try? it quite like sardine in tomato sauce but with indian curry taste.

    ellen: thank you, if you like indian curry, you will like this!

    claire: potatoes is so versatil, yeah, it's a good idea too adding in some potatoes!

    daphne: hope you will like it!

    yvonne: i also eat with roti canai at the mamak stall!

    cheah: thank you madam!

    phong hong: this curry is more towards indian style..hope you will like it if you make them :)

    cass: yeah, i also tambah rice with this curry alone..fat fat liao! haha! hope you will enjoy this.

    sonia: it's an appetising dish :)

    kit: when i was little, i used to eat a lot of canned sardines, my mum just chopped some onions and garlic and steamed them , simple way of cooking but still nice. If you love indian curry, then you will like this dish, very appetising . Thank you so much for your nice words, very encouraging! you got a very nice blog too with your wonderful bakes, trust me! and also nice song!!

    sem: i used to eat the sardine curry at the mamak stall a lot when i was in kl..with roti canai!

    anne: hope you will like it!!

    kelly: thank you so much for the award, i truly appreciate it!!

  41. diane: yes, you can try using fresh sardines with tomato sauce or paste and cook them with some spice or maybe herbs.

    cm: yeah, with nasi and roti also bagus. Hope kak cm will like this version!

    jessie : thanks, the sauce is actually more from the tomato sauce from the canned sardine :))if you like indian curry, you will find this nice.

    mkgirl: sekarang you cakap sambal sardine with potatoes, i feel like having them now!!

    juliana: thanks! i used canned sardines here cos i wanted its tomato sauce from the canned too.! you have a good weekend!

    tigerfish: yes, i remember you cook something very similar. that's why i put a link there too . You know, my mum used to cook the way you said, chopped onions and a little tomato and garlic too, i ate that a lot when i was small!

    cathleen: you reminded me how i just eat them when i make sardine sandwiches when i was a schooling!

    joyce: haha! chubby ones also can tambah rice of course! just more chubby only lah! hahaha!

    love2cook: yeah, somebody just mentioned about adding potatoes, i think that's a great idea to the dish! thank you!!

    joyce@cc: i like curry and all sorts of dishes ..i dont really cook curry that often tho i wish i can cook more..but it's still carzy hot these few weeks here but thank god, we had some rain here for the past 2 days.

    eileen180: cuba lah!! haha!

    angie: those sauce mainly comes from the canned sardines. Yeah, would be great on pasta too!

    gert: as i was telling some of them, my mum used to cook sardines from the can too when i was small, not this spicy curry type but just with chopped onions, garlic and tomato, ate that a lot when i was schooling!

    sudden cook: yeah, a lot of nice dishes from the book, i've bookmarked a few, like some prawn and sotong dishes,hopefully can try that soon! hope to see your mutton post up!

    amelia: sedap with roti! sometimes when i'm lazy to do cook, can sardines will come to the rescue!!

    kristy: using canned sardines or fresh sardines? would like to see your it in your old post?

    bee: this is quite an appetising dish..for me! sour and tangy..if you like indian curry, think you will like this too!

    lyndsey: infact i have never cook fresh sardines before. Am not too sure about other brands but what i used here is a well known local brand call " ayam"

    zoe: those spices give a very indian touch or taste to the curry but if you re cooking for your son, i think just tomato sauce from the can alone is nice. My mum used to just cook that with chopped onion and garlic and tomato.

    mich: actually i never knew too until i tasted them at the indian food stall, just love that curry..this is quite similar to theirs. Before this, i also just know cooking sardines with chopped onions and squeeze some lime juice into it, actually that's quite nice too!

    bellygoodcooking: thanks for telling me about the green cake! Happy to know that your kids like them!

    chris: thank you! this is indian style curry sardine, quite appetising!

    jen: thank you so much for another award, will be chking it soon!! muax!

    louise: yes, you can even do it more western way, use tomato paste and add some herbs into it!

    elisabeth: do you believe this, i actually do eat canned sardines with mayo and onions a lot too, they make good sandwiches..yum!!

  42. jessica: you will probably see steam out of his ears after eating this! haha!

  43. I like to cook sardine this way too, but I usually deep fry the sardine fish first..

  44. Fantastic photo, it looks so bright and fresh.

  45. Hi Lena, Holy Smoke! I have never eaten sardine curry before. This is something new to me.
    Psssst, when I balek kampong, can make for me.....I bring durians. Ha ha ha.
    Have a great week, Lena.

  46. Oh yeah...this is one of my all time fave canned food. In any preps, sardines will rule!

  47. Canned sardines is one of the few canned foods I enjoyed. And you have transformed it into such a wonderful dish, awesome!

  48. Oh my how lovely. We're fans of sardines as well, but somehow only thought of them so far in Mediterranean contexts.

    Never heard of them in an Indian dish until now. We're looking forward to trying this! :)

  49. You have done a great job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I am sure they’ll be benefited from this website.