The idea for this recipe came from our neighbour at the Sydney Good Food and Wine Show – India’s Best who mentioned that Kerala Fish Curry does not taste the same unless it is made with coconut oil. After searching for recipes and finding that there were so many different variations I decided to create my own version based on the ingredients I could find in my local shop and the methods I am use to from cooking Thai food. The result was really good and even my mum commented that my Indian grandfather would have been proud that his granddaughter could make an Indian curry from scratch!
250g firm white fish (eg Ling or Cod fillets)
1 Tbsp ground Turmeric
2 Tbsp lemon juice
Pinch of salt
2 Tbsp Pure Naturally Virgin Coconut oil
1 Tbsp brown mustard seeds
1 Tbsp fenugreek seeds
½ Tbsp ground chilli powder (reduce or increase amount to taste, this amount has quite a kick)
6 fresh curry leaves (dried leaves can be used if fresh ones are not available)
1 cup coconut milk mixed with 1 cup water
2 French eshallots, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 inch ginger, grated
2 long green chillies
4 tomatoes, cut into wedges
2 Tbsp tamarind paste
Salt to taste
- Make a paste by mixing the ground turmeric, salt and lemon juice. Rub into fish fillets and leave to marinate for 10 minutes.
- Fry the marinated fish in 1 tablespoon of coconut oil on medium high heat until seared on both sides but not cooked through. Remove to a plate.
- Add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil to the pan, once hot add the mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds. When the mustard seeds start to pop add the chilli powder and curry leaves. Fry over medium heat until fragrant.
- Add shallots, garlic, ginger and green chilli, fry until shallots appear soften and transparent.
- Add half of the coconut milk mixture, once it is simmering gently add the fish and bring to a boil then add the remaining coconut milk mixture, tomatoes, tamarind paste, salt to taste and simmer gently. Do not stir as this will cause the fish to break up, if you do need to mix then swirl the pan gently.
- Simmer for 5-10 minutes until the fish is cooked through then turn off heat. Serve with rice.