Goan Fish Curry
Goan curries have a blend of fiery spices, flavor, and texture. This fish curry is creamy and delicious with coconut milk or smoothly ground coconut paste as its base. Xiti codi the Goan term for fish curry and rice. If you are looking for a dish that is not overly complex but gives you an exotic eating experience, you need to try this fish curry. I found this recipe from the worn-out pages of an old cookbook and now this is one of my top favorite recipes. It will be ready in 30 minutes and is packed with a different layer of flavors.
South India is blessed with a long coastline and you get fresh fish all the time. It has in no small way affected the very fabric of our every day lives. Fish curry is an integral part of the everyday meal. But of course, there are regional varieties and flavors. What I like about the Goan fish curry is that it has a similar coconut base gravy like the Kerala fish curry. Goa has an exotic range of seafood delicacies. If you are trying your hands at Goan cuisine for the first time, I strongly recommend you to start with this mild spiced delicious fish curry. It can be served with steamed rice, bread or naan.
The regional cuisine of Goa has a strong European influence, especially the Portuguese. Goa was a onetime Portuguese stronghold and that explains their influence on local cuisine. The use of vinegar was not native to the coastal region. This fish curry tastes extremely delicious, with a bit tang from tamarind and vinegar and has earthy spices that add depth of flavor. In addition to this is coconut. The spiciness is well balanced with the sweetness of the coconut.
Main ingredients of Goan fish curry
This is a coconut-based curry. Usually, ground coconut paste is added but you can also substitute it for coconut milk. Slight sourness is from tamarind, vinegar, and tomatoes. You can substitute tamarind with kokum or with Malabar tamarind/kudampuli. Kokum has a fruity sweetness to it while Malabar tamarind will impart a smoky flavor to the curry.
As I wrote earlier the ground coconut masala paste is most important in this recipe. The ground chilly paste is also an important ingredient. Traditionally Goan recipes use byadagi chili which is a regional favorite but you can substitute it with Kashmiri chilly. It has a bright red hue and is milder than regular chilies. They come in at 1,000-2,000 on the Scoville scale. If you can’t find these types of chilly use cayenne pepper instead. Another spice is locally used – teppal berry spice aroma and spicy kick. I have not used it for the recipe.
You can use any kind of firm fish to make this curry. The best Indian fish to use are pomfret, mackerel, and Kingfish. You can also opt for fish like haddock, tuna, cod, monkish, etc. I have used Kingfish.This recipe is also equally good for other kinds of seafood like prawns and squid.
Recipe for Goan Fish Curry
Cooking time- 25 minute
Recipe type- Side dish/ Fish Curry
Cuisine- Goan /Indian
King Fish – 1 kg
Kashmiri Whole red chilly-7-8
Grated Coconut- 1 cup
Coconut milk -1 cup
Onions chopped- 1 small
Tomatoes- 1 small
Cumin powder-1/3 tsp
Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp
Pepper powder- 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder-1 tsp
Ginger- 1 inch
Garlic cloves- 4-5
Tamarind juice- small ball
Vinegar- 1 tsp
Cumin seeds- 1/3 tsp
Curry leaves- 2 springs
Salt to taste
Cut and clean fish. Marinate it with a pinch of salt and turmeric and set aside.
Chop onions and tomatoes. Soak dry red chilly in warm water and set aside for 10 minutes.
In a blender add grated coconut soaked red chilies, pepper, coriander, cumin, ginger, garlic, and tamarind pulp. Blend and make a fine paste and keep aside.
Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan and add cumin seeds. Wait for it to splutter and add in chopped onions and curry leaves and saute till golden brown.
Pour in the grounded paste, turmeric, and salt and fry till oil separates. Add tomatoes and saute till soft. Stir in coconut milk and another half cup of water and bring it to boil. Gently slide in the fish pieces, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and one tsp of vinegar and simmer till the gravy has reached the desired consistency. Serve warm with steamed rice or pav bread.
Like to try more fish recipes, check my page 100 Fish and Seafood Recipes.
Hope you will all enjoy!