Fish Baked in Coconut Milk
- 2 pounds thick fish fillets or steaks, halibut, cod or salmon
- 4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 cups finely chopped onion
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons minced ginger
- 1 teaspoon minced green chile, serrano, Thai or jalapeno
- 1 cup chopped fresh tomatoes
- Spice mixture:
- 6 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper, cayenne
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, coarsely ground with mortar and pestle
- 1 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, for garnish
Cut fillets crosswise into strips 2-inches wide. Rub fish with mixture of lemon juice and oil, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In medium frying pan, over medium high heat, fry onion in oil until edges are nicely browned. Add garlic, ginger, and green chile, and stir over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, spice mixture, fennel seeds, and salt, and fry, stirring constantly until tomato pieces break down to form a lumpy paste. Add coconut milk and simmer about 5 minutes until a thick, rich sauce is formed.
Arrange fish in an oiled baking/serving dish large enough to hold fish in a single layer. Bake, uncovered, for 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Pour sauce over fish, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and return to oven for 15 to 20 minutes until fish is opaque.
Garnish with chopped cilantro.
Recipe courtesy Maya Kaimal MacMillan, Curried Favors (c) 1996 Maya Kaimal MacMillan and Abbeville Press, Courtesy Abbeville Press, New York