Kitchen therapy … Thai styled rawas + Chinese egg fried rice


There is something incredibly therapeutic about a mortar and a pestle, Oriental spice and condiments.

I had bought some rawas fillets, a sea fish, from Jude’s Cold Storage at Pali Naka, Bandra recently at Rs 200 (4 USD) for the lot. This fish was fresh and they said was from the day’s catch.

I sautéed some of the fish with South African Peri Peri sauce, SA red pepper and Australian bush salts the other night. The pairing turned out to be pretty good and the quality of the fish excellent. A quick fix dish after work.

Today I decided to cook the rest of the fish in a Thai style. Not from any recipe. But using sauces, condiments and herbs which are used quite a bit in Thai cooking. And the mortar and pestle that I lugged all the way back from Chiang Mai

I tossed up a quick egg fried rice to go with it.


Here are the recipes:

Thai Styled Rawas



  • Take about 200 g rawas fillets. Now the thing with rawas is that it breaks very easily. So cut it into small cubes for sanity. Use a flat pan while cooking as the fish becomes easier to manage
  • Marinate the rawas in about 3 tablespoons of Thai Sriracha sauce. Sriracha is an allegedly hot Thai chilli sauce which is actually kid stuff for most Indian palates. I picked up the Sriracha at an Asian Store at Sydney but you would get it here too.  Add a tablespoon of Thai chilli paste and a teaspoon of honey. The Thais use palm sugar to sweeten dishes. I bought the chilli paste at Chiang Mai but saw it at Oz too.  Most of the sauces would be available at stores such as Regal, Sante and Vijay Stores at Pali Market, Bandra and Nature’s Basket too. Keep the marinated fish in the fridge for half an hour.
  • Thai paste – put about an inch of finely chopped ginger, 7,8 basil leaves, 7,8 round Thai eggplants and 2,3 Kaffir lime leaves. I got all of this at Lallu’s at Pali Market. Pound these in the mortar and pestle till you get a rough paste



  • Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a pan. We use rice oil these days. It’s apparently healthier
  • Once the fish is hot put the fish in the pan. Rawas breaks easily so use your fingers or a spoon to put them gently on to the pan. One at a time
  • Turn the fish cubes over one by one after it cooks on one side and add in the Thai paste and season with some fish sauce
  • Let it cook on a high flame for 2 min.
  • Reduce the flame and turn the fish over one by one again.
  • Another two minutes and you are done



My heart is never into ‘eating’ fish. The small portion that I tries gave me a fair bit of creative satisfaction. K, the fish eater in the family, lapped up the rest even though it was a tad salty. The saltiness was due to adding salt AND fish sauce. Just the latter would do

Chinese egg fried rice


  • Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a wok. I used rice oil instead of the Chinese favourite of sesame oil
  • Once the oil heats add some crushed garlic
  • Then break an egg in it and scramble it by stirring it with a ladle
  • Add a bowl of cooked rice
  • Then add a teaspoon of shrimp sauce for seasoning, a pinch of ajino moto, a teaspoon each of soy sauce and vinegar. I didn’t have any vinegar at home so used some Lebanese lemon powder. You could use salt instead of shrimp sauce
  • Stir the rice for a minute
  • Add some crunchy vegetables. All I had at home were spring onions and a few bits of capsicum. Shredded cabbage & carrots would be nice
  • Stir for a minute and you are ready


I’ve been making a lot of stir fried Hakka noodles off late as they are so quick to put together. The rice was a nice change.


That fish looks absolutely yum. I love Rawas, and you've done so well here! I love the mortar and pestle picture, too! And the egg fried rice look perfect with the scrambled eggs and the spring onions.
Madhura Manoj said…
Delicious & filling.Photos makes me hungry.
Pinku said…
all of it looks absolutely yummy.

btw knife : I would be traveling to Bangkok in June and want to pick up a mortar and pestle - could you please let me know how much ur's cost?

Also do let me know if I can get you anything from there.
Kalyan Karmakar said…
Hey thanks ...Saee... fish inspires me to cook...though not always eat

Tks Madhura

@Pinku, checked with Robyn of the blog/ site Eating Asia. The place to buy a mortar and pestle at Bangkok apparently is Aw Taw Kaw market.

Which I believe is different from 'hau mau khau' ;)
really love these recipes Kalyan...the fried rice looks perfect for a quick meal.
Priyanka said…
The fish looks delicious! This is going to be my next weekend's 'special' menu! Decided!

- Fan,
Reeta Skeeter said…
eeeee!! I am a beeeg fan of lovely looking mortar pestles...lurveee yours.. my mum has a similar one in very recent purchase was a brown-coloured one used for light crushing from a Thai/Malay(forgotten which one) stall at the international trade fair in Delhi :) As far as the post goes it looks tempting...though me is a vegetarian who loves to know all about NV food :)
Kalyan Karmakar said…
@Sayantani i like the simplicity of Chinese wok cooking

@Priyanka: do let me know how it goes and thanks :)

@Reeta, searched a lot for this mortar and pestle. often wondered what vegetarians do on the blog? Isn't it like adultery or something? ;)
The fried rice looks so scrumptious! :) And yes agreed on the therapeutic value of a mortar and pestle!
Suparna said…

Accidentally discovered your blog while looking 4r some food recipes.

Anyways, am a big foodie and like coming to ur blog all the more to look at the food pix and get salivated.

Live in Kolkata and its nice to know you too a Kolkatan.

Keep on writing and of course posting more of such tempting food pix.
Kalyan Karmakar said…
Cathartic ain't it Lorraine? :)

Thanks Suparna. Glad you liked it. I am a Kolkatan in Mumbai
Scarlett said…
Kalyan, we get such good Thai food here. There are a million Thai places near my office, run by people from Thailand and the food is to die for. I've been eating Thai for lunch since I got here a week ago, even though there are many other kinds of cuisines available! Food in Sydney is really good.

Also, apparently galangal is the thing to use in Thai food instead of ginger. Courtesy MC Australia :D
BongMom said…
Spice paste er chobi ta darun. Thai style rawas sounds real good idea. Oz style rawas ta koi gelo ?
Kalyan Karmakar said…
@Scarlett: that's what I like about oz. you have global food cooked by immigrants which make it more authentic than here. Try a place called Spice Siam

I use galangal while cooking dishes Thai dishes from the T. was making do with what I had at home

@Bong Mom: ota to aboriginal with sauces from SA & Oz. Too dependant on sauces to put it up I thought
Reeta Skeeter said…
Or perhaps ogling ;-) i lurveeee to slurp and see NV food :) my hobby you can say..
Miri said…
The fish looks awesome - I am currently out of action so for my birthday ordered (for the first time in 10 years I didnt cook) fish fillets from a lovely deli called Ploof which were marinated in Thai herbs. was amazing. But this is so easy to do at home, I am definitely going to do it next time