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Meen Pathiri | Steamed rice pancakes filled with fish masala

Meen Pathiri

Meen pathiri

Meen Pathiri -popular malabar iftar snack made using rice flour and fish masala filling.
Prep Time: 10 minutes+ soaking time .
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 4 to 5

  1. Parboiled rice- 1 cup( Preferably Ponni rice,see notes)
  2. Shallots – 5 to 6
  3. Grated coconut – 3/4 cup
  4. Fennel seeds – 1/2 tsp
  5. Cumin seeds- 1/4 tsp
  6. Pathiri podi/roasted rice flour – 2/3 cup( or as required)
  7. Water- as required
  8. Salt – to taste

For Fish Masala filling:

  1. Fish- 300 gms( see notes)
  2. Kashmiri chili powder – 1.5 tsp
  3. Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  4. Onion ,finely chopped – 2 medium
  5. Green chilies,finely chopped- 2
  6. Ginger garlic paste- 2 tsp
  7. Curryleaves,chopped- 1 sprig
  8. Kashmiri chili powder- 1.5 tsp
  9. Coriander powder- 1 tsp
  10. Turmeric powder- 1/4 tsp
  11. Tomato,finely chopped- 1 small
  12. Garam masala- 1/4 tsp
  13. Coconut oil/vegetable oil- as required
  14. Salt – to taste

For Coconut Paste:

  1. Grated coconut- 3 tbsp( see notes)
  2. Fennel seeds – 1/4 tsp
  3. Water – as required


  • Wash and soak the rice in hot water for about 5 to 6  hours.Drain the water completely.
  • In a blender grind the drained rice with just enough  water  to form  a thick,grainy paste.(start by adding 2 to 3 tbsp of water at a time,add more only if required.).Add shallots,grated coconut,fennel seeds and cumin seeds and grind for about 10 to 20 seconds or until it forms a slightly grainy paste.
  • Transfer this rice mixture into a mixing bowl and add the rice flour/pathiri podi and salt to taste.Mix well using your fingers until well combined.(Start with 1/3 cup rice flour and add more as required.The dough should be soft and  smooth.)Cover and set aside.
  • To Prepare Fish Masala.In a bowl add the fish, kashmiri chili powder,turmeric powder and salt.Sprinkle little water and rub the masala onto the fish.Marinate the fish for about 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the fish until it turns golden brown on both the sides,turning sides once or twice in between.Transfer onto a plate and allow to cool completely.
  • Remove the bones and shred the fish using a fork.Set aside.Heat oil in same pan ,add onion,green chili and ginger garlic paste.Saute until onion turns golden brown.
  • Reduce the flame to low and add kashmiri chili powder,coriander powder and turmeric powder.Saute until raw smell leaves.Now add the tomato ,cover and cook over medium flame until it turns soft.
  • In a blender combine together all the ingredients listed under ‘For coconut paste’ and grind to form a smooth paste.Add this to the onion masala.Add 2 to 3 tbsp hot water and mix well.Cook for about  3 to 4 minutes.
  • Now add the fish ,garam masala and  more salt as required.Mix well and cook for about 5 to 8 minutes over low flame.
  • Finally add coriander leaves and switch off the stove.
  • To prepare meen pathiri.Take a lemon sized portion from the prepared dough and place it onto a piece of banana leaf (or a parchment paper).Flatten it using your fingers to form a circle.( you can grease your hand with oil to make it easier to spread the dough)
  • Spread 1.5 to 2 tbsp of the prepared fish masala leaving 1/2″ along the edge.Cover with another pathiri and gently press to seal the edges.Repeat with the remaining dough/ fish masala.
  • Carefully place the prepared meen  pathiri in a steamer and steam cook for about 10 to 15 minutes .


  • Here i have used matta rice.For best results use ponni rice ,if available.
  • You can use any firm fish like king fish or pomfret.
  • Adjust the quantity of green chilies and kashmiri chili powder according to your taste.
  • 1 cup = 250 ml

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    May 19, 2020 at 10:06 am

    This is by far the best kerala cooking blog I have ever come across! Kudos!!

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