Sardine fry/Mathi varuthathu/Chaala varuthathu


Sardine fry, Mathi varuthathu, Chaala varuthathu

Sardine fry / Mathi varuthathu / Chaala varuthathu is an easy fish recipe which is popular all over Kerala.

Sardine has a unique flavour and is a commonly available fish variety in South India. It is regarded as the best source of omega 3 fatty acids, which plays a key role in reducing blood cholesterol and maintaining normal triglyceride levels. This spicy fried recipe goes well with rice. Mathi/ Chaala varuthathu or Sardine fry preparation make use of chili powder, turmeric powder and pepper powder. The presence of chilli powder and pepper powder provides a spicy flavour and the use of curry leaves enhances the taste. Have a look at the ingredients used and the method of preparation of Mathi/ Chaala varuthathu or Sardine fry.

Ingredients used for making Mathi varuthathu / Chaala varuthathu / Sardine fry
  • 5-6 medium sized sardine fish / Mathi / Chaala
  • 3 teaspoon of pepper powder (freshly grounded)
  • 1 teaspoon of red chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • Salt for the taste
  • 1-2 sprigs of curry leaves
  • 2-3 tablespoon of coconut oil
Good quality turmeric powder, chilli powder, pepper powder etc are available on
Preparation of Mathi varuthathu / Chaala varuthathu / Sardine fry
  • Clean and wash the fish in water, using a sharp knife make 3-4 gashes on either side of the fish.
  • Take a mixing bowl and add the ingredients like black pepper powder, turmeric powder, red chilli powder and few drops of water.
  • Mix it to form a paste and marinate the fish pieces with this prepared paste. Keep it aside for 20-30 minutes.
  • Heat some oil in a deep frying pan. Once the oil becomes hot, put some curry leaves and add the marinated Mathi / Chaala / Sardine fish.
  • Reduce the flame and fry it on a low-medium flame, flip the fish pieces after 6-7 minute and shallow fry the other side.
  • Fry it for some time and once it attains a crispy dark texture, take if off from the pan and transfer it to a serving bowl.
  • Serve it hot with rice.