Tamil Fish Curry – Meen Pulli Kozhambu

Stuff

  • skinless fish fillets (eg gurnard or snapper), cut into double bite sized pieces
  • 1 tspn ground turmeric
  • 2-3 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder (1-2 for marinade / 1 for curry)
  • 3 tbspn vegetable oil
  • 1 tspn black mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tspn chilli flakes – more for hotter
  • 1/2 tspn fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 tspn cumin seeds
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 tspn ground coriander
  • 1 tspn ground cumin
  • 125 ml tamarind water
  • 250 g tomato paste
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • 2 sprigs of curry leaves, leaves picked (or frozen, chopped fine)
  • Method
  • Sprinkle the fish with the turmeric and 1-2 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder and set aside to marinate for at least 1 hour
  • Heat the oil in a heavy-based saucepan over medium heat, add the mustard seeds and let them crackle for about 30 seconds.
  • Add the dried chilli flakes, fenugreek and cumin and cook for 1 minute or until fragrant.
  • Add the onion and cook over low heat for approx 8 minutes or until the onion is softened but not browned.
  • Add the remaining 1 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder, coriander, cumin, tamarind, tomato paste and 250 ml of water – cook covered over low heat for about 15 minutes.
  • Add the coconut milk and cook for 5 minutes. Taste to ensure balance.
  • Add the fish and cook for 5 minutes or until the fish is cooked.
  • Season with salt and serve garnished with the curry leaves.

Stolen from Ari, Sydney

Masala Lamb Cutlets

Stuff

  • 1 tspn ground mace
  • 1 tspn ground cardamom
  • 2 tspn fennel seeds
  • 2 cm piece of ginger, roughly chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, bruised
  • ½ bunch coriander (cilantro), leaves and stalks
  • 3 tblsn lime juice
  • 1 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder
  • ½ tspn ground turmeric
  • 12 French-trimmed lamb cutlets
  • ¼ tspn saffron threads
  • 3 tblsn plain thick yoghurt
  • 1 tbspn olive oil

Method

  • Combine the mace, cardamom and fennel in a bowl to make a garam masala and set aside.
  • Pin a small food processor grind the ginger, garlic and a pinch of salt to a paste.
  • Add the coriander leaves and stalks and grind to a paste. Transfer to a large bowl.
  • Add the garam masala, lime juice, chilli powder, turmeric and ½ teaspoon of salt to the bowl and combine.
  • Add the lamb and toss to coat well, then cover and marinate in the fridge for 2 hours.
  • Put the saffron threads in a small bowl with 30 ml  of boiling water. Cool, then add the yoghurt, season with a little salt and stir until smooth.
  • Add to the lamb and coat well.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium–high heat, add the lamb, in batches, and cook for 1 minute each side to seal.
  • Transfer to the prepared tray and roast for 5–7 minutes for medium or until cooked to your liking.
  • Rest for 4 minutes before serving.

Stolen from Aki’s, Sydney

Crispy Okra

Stuff

  • 400g okra
  • 2 ½ tspn garlic paste
  • 1 ½ tspn ginger paste
  • approx 1 tspn vege oil
  • 1 ½ Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 60 g chick pea flour
  • 40 g Cornflour
  • Vegetable oil for deep frying
  • Rock Salt to garnish
  • [Chaat masala for sprinkling]
  • Chilli powder to garnish

Method

  • Wash the okra and dry thoroughly with kitchen towel. Top and tail and slice in half lengthwise
  • In a bowl, combine the vegetable oil, ginger and garlic to form a workable paste, spread the garlic/ginger all over the okra to ensure a good coating
  • Combine the  salt, corn flour , chick pea flour & chilli powder
  • Dredge the garlic/ginger coated okra in the flour mix – gently shake off excess
  • Deep fry the okra till crispy & golden brown
  • Remove from oil – place on a sheet of kitchen paper to drain
  • Sprinkle with the rock salt, chaat masala, and chilli powder
  • Serve right away

Stolen from Dishoom, London

Lentil Dal

StufF

  • 200g urad dal
  • 670 g water
  • 1 tspn turmeric, added to the water
  • 1 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder, added to the water
  • 4 green chillies, finely chopped
  • ½ tspn asafoetida
  • 1 Tbspn cumin powder
  • 2 cm ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tspn garam masala
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 5 tomatoes (approx), chopped – or 1 can tomatoes
  • 2 Tbspn tomato purée
  • Salt
  • 1 Tbspn ghee or butter
  • Handful fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 red chilli, finely sliced
  • Fried shallots

Method

  • Soak the lentils in water for two hours. Drain. Add the turmeric and chilli powder to the water. Put the lentils in a medium-large pot and pour over the 670ml spiced water. Simmer for 90 minute on a low heat.
  • When the lentils have cooked through, remove the pan from the heat and use a whisk to gently break them down. Season to your taste. Set the mixture aside.
  • In a frying pan, heat oil and add the asafoetida, cumin, green chillies, ginger & garam masala – mix well and cook for a few minutes. Add the onion – cook until well browned. Add the garlic – cooking until it just turns golden.
  • In a separate pot –  cook the tomatoes over a low heat in oil until soft. Blend to smooth
  • Add the blended tomatoes, spicy onion and tomato purée to the lentils and stir on a low heat.
  • Mix in the butter. Add salt to taste
  • Garnish with chopped fresh coriander, Fine sliced red chilli & Fried shallots

Stolen from Dishoom, London

Brussel Sprout Curry

Stuff

  • 3  tblspn mustard oil
  • ½ tspn fenugreek seeds
  • 1 tspn nigella seeds
  • 50 g fresh ginger, peeled and fine grated (or blitzed in mini food processor)
  • 400-500g small Brussel Sprouts, end of core & outer leaves removed, sliced in half (try to minimise loose leaves)
  • 2 – 3 fresh green chillies, fine chopped
  • ½ tspn Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1 tspn ground coriander
  • 100 g dates, course chopped
  • 3 tblspn course desiccated coconut
  • 3 tbspn raisins
  • 2 tspn jaggery
  • 1 tspn salt
  • 3-4 tblspn Tamarind liquid
  • Chopped coriander – to serve

Method

  • Heat oil in large saucepan (with lid) fry the fenugreek seeds for 30 seconds. Add the nigella seeds & ginger and fry for 1 minute – stir constantly to ensure it doesn’t clump
  • Add the brussel sprouts, green chillies, chill powder & ground coriander – stir well to “coat” the sprouts . Cover and cook on low-medium heat for 10 minutes
  • Combine the dates, coconut, raisins, jaggery & salt – add to the sprouts  & stir well. Cover and cook on low-medium heat for 10 minutes – stir occasionally. Cook until the brussel sprouts are tender
  • Stir in the tamarind liquid
  • Scatter with lots chopped coriander

Quantities

Serve 4 – 6

Variations

More dates, coconut & raisins
More or less chilli – both fresh and Kashmiri

Adapted from a Pumpkin Curry “Stolen” from Rick Stein

Lamb Shank Curry – Rick Stein’s First-Class Railway Mutton Curry

Stuff

Marinade

  • 4 – 6 lamb shanks – See note
  • 20 g (approx 5 cloves) garlic, crushed or fine grated
  • 20 g ginger, fine grated
  • 4 tbspn thick Greek style yogurt
  • 1 tspn turmeric

Curry

  • 100 g cashew nuts
  • 300 – 400 g tomatoes
  • 100 g tomato paste
  • 100 ml vegetable oil
  • 2 x 5 cm piece of cinnamon
  • 5 cloves
  • 4 black cardamoms
  • 4 star anise
  • 1/2 tspn mace
  • 1 – 2 large onion, medium chopped
  • 1 tbspn coriander
  • 2 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder – see note
  • 2 tspn Garam Masala
  • 1 tspn turmeric
  • 20 g (approx 5 cloves) garlic, crushed or fine grated
  • 20 g ginger, fine grated
  • 2 – 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tspn salt
  • 100 ml coconut milk

Method

  • Mix together the marinade ingredients. Coat the meat well, marinate in the fridge for several hours, preferably overnight.
  • In a medium pot cashew nuts, tomatoes & enough water to just cover. Bring to boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and blend in food processor to a smooth paste.
  • Heat the vegetable oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add all the cinnamon, cloves, cardamoms, star anise & mace – fry for 1 minute or so.
  • Add the onions – fry for 10 minutes until the onions start to brown.
  • Add the coriander, chilli powder, Garam Masala, turmeric, garlic & ginger – fry for 1 minute.
  • Add the marinated meat and any juices fry for about 10 minutes to brown the meat.
  • Add the cashew nut & tomato paste, bay leaves and salt. Mix well.
  • Bring to the boil – cover & put in over at 150 degree for 3 hours. Stir from time to time and add a little more water if necessary. The sauce should be thick and the lamb should be falling apart tender. Remove the whole spices if you want.
  • Add the coconut milk, stir well – leave for 5 minutes before serving.

Note

  • Works great with boneless lamb shoulder, (approx 1 kg, large diced) or lamb shoulder chops (approx 1.25 kg)
  • Adjust chilli to heat – note the coconut milk to finish does soften the heat

Thai Fish Curry

Stuff

Curry Sauce

  • ½ cup fresh coriander stems and leaves, chopped
  • 1 can good-quality coconut milk
  • 4-5 spring onions, sliced (including green stem)
  • 1 thumb-size piece galangal or ginger, grated
  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar (or more/less to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon shrimp paste
  • 1 fresh red chili, minced

Curry

  • 3-4 fillets of fresh fish – any type (truly – anything works – your call)
  • Handful fresh mushrooms, sliced – optional
  • 1 red bell pepper, de-seeded and diced – optional
  • 1-2 medium tomato, cut into small pieces
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves – chopped
  • Handful of fresh coriander leaves – chopped
  • Fresh lime or lemon wedges for garnish
  • 2-3 kaffir lime leaves, left whole

Method

  • Blend all the ‘Thai Curry Sauce’ ingredients in a food processor to form a smooth curry sauce.
  • Pour the sauce and kaffir lime leaves into a wok or large frying pan and place over medium to high heat. Bring to a boil.
  • Add fish, mushrooms, and red pepper. Stir well. Reduce heat to medium-high, or until it is simmering nicely. Cover and cook 6-8 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes and gently stir in. Continue simmering (covered) for another 2-3 minutes.
  • Do a taste test for salt and sweetness, adding more fish sauce (instead of salt) until salty enough. If too sour for your taste, add a little more sugar. If too salty or sweet, add 1-2 tablespoons fresh lime (or lemon) juice.

Serve

  • Spoon the fish with curry sauce and vegetables onto a serving platter or into a serving bowl.
  • Sprinkle with fresh basil and coriander.
  • Garnish with lime or lemon wedges and serve hot with rice.