Goa Fish Curry

A versatile fish curry which can also be made with chicken, lamb or pork. Dealing with a fresh whole coconut can be fiddly, but is worth doing - especially if you are a DIY enthusiast!!. However, if you prefer you can soak 1/2 cup of dessicated coconut in 1 cup of warm water for 20 - 30 mins to achieve a similar result.
Serves: 6
Preparation Time: 45 mins
Cooking Time: 20 mins
1lb / 450g firm fleshed fish
1 coconut
6 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp tamarind paste
1 Whole Chilli (or to taste)
1 Cinnamon Stick
6 Whole Cloves
1 tsp Coriander Seeds
1 tsp Fenugreek Seeds (Methi)
1 tsp Black Mustard Seeds
1/2 tsp Black Peppercorns
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
juice 1/2 lime (optional)
sprig of fresh mint (optional)
Herbs & Spices
1 Chillies Whole
1 Cinnamon Sticks
6 Cloves Whole
1 tsp Coriander Seed
1 tsp Fenugreek Seed
1 tsp Mustard Seed Black
1/2 tsp Peppercorns Black
1/2 tsp Turmeric
Cooking Instructions
First prepare your coconut. Rest the coconut on an unbreakable surface and hit it all around the middle with the back of cleaver - the UNSHARPENED side. Once a crack forms, hold the coconut over a bowl and allow the coconut juice to drain out. Reserve this in the fridge. Next break the coconut open in two halves using a hammer. Remember, please operate all tools in a safe manner.

Take one half of coconut and break it further into manageable size pieces and grate the flesh off the shell using a cheese grater. Once you have the flesh, squeeze out the white coconut milk from the flesh into a bowl keeping the flesh. Add the tamarind paste to the coconut milk, mix and leave for the flavours to infuse for about 15 mins.

Grind the chilli with the cloves, coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds, mustard seeds and black peppercorns using a pestle and mortar. Add to the coconut flesh along with the turmeric. Heat the oil in a heavy based frying pan and gently fry this paste for about 2 mins until the spices are truly aromatic. Add the fish, coconut milk and cinnamon stick to the pan, bring to a bare simmer and gently cook for 15 mins or until the fish done.

Serve on a bed of rice accompanied with a cool refreshing drink made from the chilled coconut juice mixed with the juice of 1/2 a fresh lime, garnished with a sprig of mint.