I just made the most delicious fish curry* and am sure to make it again soon. It was a recipe from Zanzibar (Tanzania) and “Mchuzi wa Samaki” simply means “Fish Curry” in Swahili. When I was in Zanzibar I had the best curry I have ever eaten – so much so that I went back for a fourth helping! I don’t remember what was in it, but it was fabulous. As was this. And so simple. Would you like the recipe?
- about a kilo or so of firm fleshed fish (I used barramundi)
- oil for frying
- a can of coconut milk (the recipe said one to two cups, but I threw in the whole lot – hey, it was lite coconut milk)
- a large onion, chopped
- two or three tomatoes, chopped
- a green capsicum (the recipe said one or two sweet green peppers and I’m assuming that’s what a green capsicum is)
- ten (yes, ten) cloves of garlic, minced
- one or two teaspoons of garam masala (I used more than two) or curry powder
- tamarind paste or powder, to taste – THIS IS ESSENTIAL!! (how much tamarind paste do you use if you don’t know what it will do?? I used a couple of teaspoons)
- salt (but I forgot that one)
What you do:
- Vigorously (why vigorously? I’ve no idea) stir together the onion, tomatoes, capsicum, garlic, and spices. (Here is where I screwed up – I put a teaspoon of the tamarind in here and wasn’t supposed to. I think I was supposed to add the salt here, though).
- Briefly fry the fish in hot oil (or grill it) so that it’s seared but still uncooked inside. Place the fish in a saucepan and cover it in coconut milk and add the tamarind (here is where I was supposed to put the tamarind – so I added another teaspoon here).
- Add the vegetables to the fish and coconut milk, simmer slowly on low heat until the fish is fully cooked and the sauce has thickened.
- Serve with rice.
- Drink Cardamom Tea or Chai with the meal, or afterwards (or like me, guzzle wine).
Try it – I promise it is so, so divine. It’s really mild (in heat), and so full of flavour.
I was going to take a photo of the meal, but was too busy eating it. Sorry.
*I know – me and fish – who’d have thought it (I have warped morals about eating fish). But it was caught by a friend who lives up in Weipa (way, way north Queensland), so I was justified in eating it (no commercial fishery depleting the oceans stocks**)- she froze it and brought some for me on a recent trip back to Townsville. And it was ocean caught Barramundi (fresh water barra is yuk, but ocean barra is divine).
**Yeah, I know (again), recreational fishers do almost as much harm (maybe more) as commercial fishers. I did say my morals were warped. But I still refuse to buy fish from a shop and will NEVER buy prawns… but that’s a rant for a different day.