29th May 2024

East Indian Bombay Duck Curry

East Indian Bombay Duck Curry

The melt in the mouth fish – Bombay Duck, could soon be a rarity, as warming of the seas and intensive fishing are pushing its populations deeper into the sea. Although available in good quantities currently along the coasts of Maharashtra and Bengal, you may not be able to savour this fish in a few years. So get your hands on some and enjoy in the present. Cook the East Indian Bombay Duck Curry ASAP.

Serves: A Family of Four

Prep. Time: 15 Mins.

Cooking Time: 20 Mins.


  • Fresh Bombay Ducks [bummalo, bombil] (cleaned) – 10
  • Onion (finely chopped) – 2 medium
  • Tomato (chopped) – 1 large
  • Green Corriander (fine chopped) – 1 tbsp.
  • Garlic (finely chopped) – 10 to 12 cloves
  • Turmeric Powder – 1 tsp.
  • Red Chilli Powder – 1 ½ tbsp.
  • East Indian Bottle Masala – 1 tbsp.
  • Corriander Powder – 1 tbsp.
  • Cumin Powder – ¼ tsp.
  • Kokam [Garcinia Indica] – 8 to 10 petals.
  • Tamarind – 1 lime sized ball (soaked in 1 ½ cup warm water)
  • Oil – 2 tbsp.
  • Salt – 2 ½ tsp. or to taste

Step 1:     Cut the Bombay Ducks into pieces. Apply 1 ½ tsp. salt and leave aside.

Preparation of East Indian Bombay Duck Curry

Step 2:     Heat oil in a pan. Add the garlic and sauté for a minute on medium heat. Add the onion and sauté till translucent.

Step 3:     Add the masala powders and 2 tbsp. warm water and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for 2 minutes.

Preparation of East Indian Bombay Duck Curry
Preparation of East Indian Bombay Duck Curry

Step 5:     Pulp and strain the tamarind into the pan. Cover and cook on medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes till the raw smell disappears.

Step 6:     Uncover and add the Bombay Ducks, kokam pieces, a tsp. of salt and cook uncovered on medium heat for 5 minutes. Do not cook on high heat, the bombils will disintegrate.

Preparation of East Indian Bombay Duck Curry
Preparation of East Indian Bombay Duck Curry

Step 7:     Turn off the heat, garnish with corriander and leave covered for 2 minutes.

Enjoy with hot steamed rice.


  1. East Indian Masala is very good…. one should see it in real the making of it or on youtube.. very interesting.. I use this masala very often I order from Mumbai the real homemade one… its really nice

    • The East Indians use this masala in all of their cooking. There are umpteen number of dry spices that go into the masala. Even some of the East Indians themselves don’t know all that goes in. But their village grocer knows exactly. I have witnessed such when I tagged along with a friend. He just asked asked the grocer to provide the spices for 2 Kg. and the shopkeeper knew exactly what to give him.

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