This fish curry is another fine example of the cooking in the Gulf states. I have borrowed the recipe from The Complete Middle East Cookbook by Tess Mallos although I would argue it is very similar to one by Atu Kochhar too. Regardless of origin if you like fish curries it is a winner.
Fish Curry – Samak Quwarmah
You will need:
4 fish fillets – sea bream or sea bass are good
4 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
2 onions finely chopped
1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 tablespoon Baharat
1 teaspoon turmeric
2.5cm piece of cinnamon stick
200g tomatoes, skinned and chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
100ml fish stock (or water)
Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee or oil in a pan and sauté the onion until translucent. Add the ginger, garlic, red chilli powder, Baharat, turmeric and cinnamon and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, lemon zest and stock. Bring to the boil and then simmer gently until the tomatoes melt in the sauce.
Score the fish skin. Heat a frying pan over a medium high heat befoe adding the remaining ghee / oil. Sear the fillets skin side down for about 2 minutes, until the skin is crisp, before turning and cooking for a further minute or until the fillet is cooked through.
To serve, spoon the sauce onto plates and add a bed of basmati rice to the middle, placing the fish on top. Garnish with dried rose petals if you have them. Serve immediately.