Raja Phanna Upkari is a super-spicy, delightfully tangy Konkani dish made with very few ingredients. "Raja" here refers to mackerel and somehow for me, this fish is irreplaceable. Ofcourse, you can make this dish with prawns or tilapia or any other type of fish, but I always found mackerels winning hands down on this one.
5 to 6 medium mackerels, cleaned and cut
2 cups onions finely chopped
5 to 6 tsp chilli powder
1 goose-berry sized tamarind
In a small bowl, add 1/4 cup hot water and soak tamarind in it.
In a deep-bottomed pan, heat oil. Add chopped onion and roast for about 10 minutes till they become brownish. Add chilli powder and roast on medium-low heat for 7 to 8 minutes.
Squeeze tamarind in the water as much as possible. Add the water into the pan. Pour some more water on the tamarind, squeeze out the juice completely and add the water to the pan. Discard the tamarind.
Add a cup or two of water and bring to a boil. Add mackerels. Add more water if needed and salt to taste. Bring to a boil. Simmer and cook till the fish is completely cooked, about 5 to 10 minutes.