Coconut & Mackerel Curry

I am fairly certain I am addicted to curry. I can only really go a week without one before I start to get to get uncomfortable cravings and I would usually rather have a curry over almost anything else. People say that it is the chilli I am addicted to, but I don’t think so. I think it is the whole spice package that you can only get with a nice curry that I’m after. I never used to cook much in the way of curries, having tried a few mediocre recipes and getting mediocre results, I resigned myself to a life of having to have people cook my curry for me, and then I discovered Indian Food Made Easyand every recipe I have made from it has been great. Great, and, as the title suggests, easy.

I’ve adapted this recipe from the said book. I can kind of hear people thinking… I don’t like mackerel… Well, neither do I normally but cooked like this it’s delish, I promise. And mackerel is very cheap and very good for you indeed. Win Win. This is a fairly hot curry, anyway, so if you don’t like it too hot I suggest halving the quantity of chilli powder. Serves 4.

  • 450-500g fresh mackerel, get it cleaned and the heads removed and then cut into chunks 1-2 inches thick. The bones in will flavour the sauce and keep the fish together. Bones are obviously not a problem unless you are a small child or very elderly.
  • 25oml coconut milk
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion
  • handful of cherry tomatoes or 1 or 2 normal tomatoes
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 10g ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp tamarind paste
  • 25 leaves
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp  ground coriander
  • 350 ml water
  • salt & pepper

Ok, so. Heat your oil in a large pan and fry the fenugreek , half the curry leaves and cumin seeds for 1o or so seconds, and then add the onions, salt & pepper. Cook over a medium heat for 6- 8 minutes until the onion is soft and golden. Meanwhile, put the garlic, ginger, tomato and the remaining dry spices in a blender and whizz into a paste. When the onions are cooked, add the spice paste and continue to cook over a high heat for another 10 minutes. If it gets a bit dry you can add a splash of the water. After the 10 minutes have elapsed, you add the rest of the water and bring it up to the boil. Add the fish and the remaining curry leaves, bring back to the boil again and cook for 3-4 mins. Stir in the tamarind paste, and, when the fish is cooked – a matter of minutes depending on how thickly you’ve cut it, add the coconut milk. Stir, and taste. If you’d like it a bit more sour, add more tamarind . Serve with plain rice.


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