Saiva Meen Kulambu

Saiva Meen Kulambu or vegetarian fish curry is a superb example of innovation in Chettinad cuisine. This is a vegetarian version of recipe Ayira Meen Kalmbu which uses tiny paddy fishes. Fried banana flowers are used as a substitute to tiny paddy fish in this clever dish.


  • 1 cup Vazhaipoo / banana blossoms (prefer outer florets)
  • Oil
  • Coriander leaves
  • 1 teaspoon Garam masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon Turmeric powder
  • 1 tomato, medium sized, chopped
  • 5 garlic, chopped
  • 10 Shallots, chopped roughtly
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon Red chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Corn flour
  • Salt

For Masala

  • 1 piece Cinnamon, inch long
  • 3 Cloves
  • 2 pods Cardamom
  • 2 Dry red chilies
  • 1 teaspoon Fennel seeds
  • 1/4 cup Coconut grated
  • 5 Cashews


  1. Oil roast ingredients in masala and grind to fine paste with some water once cool.
  2. Marinate banana florets along with corn flour, red chilli powder and salt for 30 min. Deep fry in oil till golden brown. Keep aside.
  3. Het oil. Splutter bay leaf and cumin seeds. Fry garlic and onion till transperent.
  4. Add ginger garlic paste, tomato, red chili powder and garam masala. Saute till tomatos are soft.
  5. Add coconut paste and mix well. Saute for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Adjust consistency with water and taste with salt. Continue cooking until kuzhambu thickens and blends well.
  7. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve saiva meen kuzhambu along with steamed hot rice.

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