Fried gaboli or fried fish roe is a delicacy among East Indians. Made with the eggs of the palla or hilsa fish, the gaboli fry is also called Indian caviar.
Fried fish roe is something we wait all year for, especially when mom doesn’t do her regular gaboli freezer stocking.
What some people consider fish offal because it’s the discarded parts of the fish; others consider a delicacy because it’s delicious and super costly.
The taste of hundreds of little fish eggs melting in your mouth is something you can’t forget. And when spawning season comes around, you just have to have some!
By the way, did you know that this is the Indian version of caviar? It may not be as expensive as the black-colored Sturgeon caviar or Beluga caviar, but it holds its own.
Gaboli is the local Marathi term for the roe or fish eggs from the palla, which is also called illish or hilsa. The Bengalis love this fish, and prices over on that side of India shoot through the roof. Thankfully, the cost of a pala fish and it’s roe is a bit more decent over here in Mumbai. Compared to Bengal, not compared to other Mumbai fish.
Whether you wait to eat fresh gaboli or use fish eggs that were stored a month or two ago or six months ago, this recipe is perfect!
When there’s no time for rice, you can always eat the palla or hilsa fish eggs with chapati and any other curry. You can even eat it plain. The only problem is it tastes so amazing that you can’t stop eating!
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Ingredients and Steps for Making Fried Hilsa/Palla/Illish Fish Eggs
The recipe is pretty easy. You can either use fresh or stocked roe.
If using fresh roe, boil it before frying. If using stocked roe, just reheat before frying. Some people just buy and fry it straight. But we’ve found that boiling before frying, helps the fish egg pieces stay intact.
Simply coat with a mix of species and rice flour for graininess and fry. You can fall in love with it.
If you’re using fish eggs that you’ve boiled and stocked months ago, just give it a light 2 min boil, and the fry for just 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
If you’re using fresh gaboli, fry for 7 to 8 minutes on each side (that’s about 15 minutes total). Or alternatively, give it a light 5 minute boil before frying, so that the delicate fish eggs don’t fall apart.
Yes, there are three different options or methods here.
We don’t use too much rice flour because we want the focus to be the taste of the gaboli, but if you want a perfect coat, triple the amount of the rice flour.
The homemade fried gaboli recipe isn’t something you need to worry about. Simply follow these few instructions and you’re good to go.
Yes, I know there were more than a few pics of how to fry gaboli from the freezer or fresh roe, but aren’t they worth it?
Fried Gaboli – Fried Fish Roe – Fried Fish Eggs
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- 2 Roe or 16 pieces of 1-inch each
- 0.5 teaspoon Salt
- 2 Tbsp Water (you can use leftover boiling water)
- 1 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 2 teaspoon Red Chili Powder
- 2 Tbsp Rice Flour
- 8 Tbsp Oil
- Optional: If you want, boil the fresh gaboli for five minutes before frying so it doesn't fall apart.
- We usually cut the fish eggs into pieces after they're boiled. This helps them to hold together better but many people cook from fresh too. You can if you prefer.
- Add all the spices to a pot with two tablespoons of water. (If you boiled the gaboli, retain some of the water from boiling and use that.)
- Add rice flour and mix well.
- Add oil to a pan and fry the coated fish roe for about 7 to 8 minutes on each side.
- Allow to cool before serving.
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Nutrition (Per Serving)
Disclaimer: Nutrition Information per serving is estimated by a third party software based on the ingredients used, and is for informational purposes only. It will vary from product to product, based on methods of preparation, origin and freshness of ingredients. Please consult the package labels of the ingredients you use, or chat with your dietician for specific details.This printable recipe card is for home use only. For more recipes head over to AbbysPlate.com
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