Sundays were always special. Mum displayed the best of her culinary skills on the 7th day of every week. One of the family favourites was the Xacuti. ? A photocopy of the original Portuguese culinary delight Chacuti, it got Indianised with our kind of spices and flavours. The Goan Xacuti is a heavenly gravy mix of roasted coconut base topped with poppy seeds and Kashmiri Chillies. Chicken, mutton or fish, Xacuti pairs up with any chief ingredient. Paneer and mushrooms too, yes. Mom’s kitchen best, however, was the Shark Xacuti. Quite a tongue twister, eh?

Well, for all those of you who follow me, this is a once in a blue moon where I am going to post a recipe on my blog. So close those jaws and read very carefully. (What else could I do with X?)

Image Source : Wikipedia

Ingredients :

500 gms Shark(slices)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp tumeric powder
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste

2 tbsps oil
2 green chillies(chopped)
2 onions(chopped)
1/2 cup tamarind juice
2 tbsps chopped coriander leaves 

For the Masala
6 tbsps freshly grated coconut
6 dry red chillies
1 tbsps coriander seeds
a pinch of aniseed
1/4 tsp poppy seeds
3 cloves
1/2 inch cinnamon

Preparation : 

Shark skinning can be a bummer. Resort to local fisher ladies for that. Once you have your chief ingredient all clean and washed, apply salt, turmeric and ginger-garlic paste to the fish slices. Keep aside for ½ an hour to marinate. 

Roast the coconut to a light brown. Then roast the remaining Masala ingredients one at a time to retain individual flavours. Then grind them all together to a fine paste keeping a tab on the use of water. 

Heat the oil and fry onions to golden brown. Then add the green chilies and ground masala paste
. Stir-fry for a minute or two and gently add the tamarind juice. Once the mixture is consistent  add the fish. Bring to boil and then dim to simmer. Shark like any other fish, cooks fast. Stir from time to time to avoid lumps. Be careful not to break the fish. When done sprinkle coriander leaves and serve hot with Pao (Portuguese for Bread) or Rice. 

Slice of Heaven…………………yum!

Find more such homegrown recipes at

And if you are like me, who loves to eat but hates to cook, then head to Martins Corner in Goa for the real thing. Do try the Pomfret Caldin too, it is heavenly. In Bombay, Goa Portuguesa and Fresh Catch are what I recommend. The tender coconut vegetable and the prawn balcaho at Goa Portuguesa are a given. Fresh Catch is frequented by the Master Blaster, Sachin Tendulkar. Need I say more? Damn, I’m hungry now. Tally ho, peeps.



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