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Fresh Green Fish Curry

by Stevie Parle, Emma Grazette from Spice Trip: The Simple Way to Make Food Exciting

An inviting fresh green fish curry recipe from the Spice Trip cookbook. Best with hake or firm white fish, the dish is delicious accompanied by steamed rice.

From the book

Stevie Parle, Emma Grazette


This recipe is based on one from Camellia Panjabi’s classic cookbook 50 Great Curries of India and is wonderfully light, but packs a serious, spicy punch. The sauce also goes well with chicken.

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Juice of 6 limes
A pinch of turmeric
900g (2lb) hake or other firm white fish, cut into chunks
2 tbsp poppy seeds
100g (3½ oz) freshly grated coconut
8-10 whole green chillies, stems removed
1 red onion
5 garlic cloves
50g (2oz) cashew nuts
6 green cardamoms, seeds removed and shells discarded
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp fennel seeds
Olive oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp coriander seeds, ground and mixed with a little water to make a paste
150g (5oz) coriander leaves and stalks
A large handful of mint leaves
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
To serve:
Steamed rice

Essential kit

You will need a pestle and mortar and a food processor.


Combine half the lime juice with the turmeric, a good pinch of salt and a dash of water and rub over the fish. Leave to marinate for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, grind the poppy seeds in a pestle and mortar with a dash of water. Transfer to a food processor with the coconut, chillies, onion, garlic, cashew nuts, cardamom, cinnamon and fennel seeds and grind everything together until you have a thick paste. Remove and put to one side.

Heat a good glug of oil in a large, wide, heavy-based pan. Add the cumin seeds and when they begin to gently sizzle, add the ground coriander seed paste. After about 10 seconds, add the spice paste and fry gently for 7 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent sticking.

Meanwhile, place the coriander and mint leaves in the food processor and purée. Add to the spice mixture, followed by the remaining lime juice. Season to taste, pour in 300ml (½ pint) water and bring to the boil. Add the fish and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 7-10 minutes, until the fish is cooked through. Serve with rice.


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