"Comforting Curries" is our theme for this week at I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), where we are currently cooking from Madhur Jaffrey's recipes. Once again, I could not decide which curry recipe to choose from! Finally decided to cook this simple Madras Fish Curry since I already have two slices of mackerel fish in my freezer that I bought a couple of days before.
This recipe uses 2 cans of canned tomatoes to be finely chopped. I used only 1 can of chopped tomatoes as I do not want the dish to be too sour and did not bother chopping them finely. The whole can goes into the saucepan as I figured after simmering for half an hour, the tomatoes should break down. Of course, the other ingredients, the spices, what is a curry without all the fragrant spices.
At first I find that there is nothing special or spectacular to the sauce after I've cooked this dish. What I can taste is just a little sour, nothing much else! So for me, this dish is a "so-so"! Maybe by using fresh ripe sweet tomatoes would be better. About an hour or so later, when my kids had their dinner, they were spooning for the sauce and keep on taking more of the sauce. I was rather surprised and thought that they would not like this dish. They loved it. Later when I ate the curry with some rice, I find that it tasted much better than earlier, the flavours must have blended when left for an hour or so, as most curry dishes do. Though it tastes so much better, I'm not in a hurry to cook this dish again. There are lots of other curry recipes that I'm eager to try!
To view other delicious curries that my friends are cooking, do stop by IHCC.
Madras Fish Curry
(adapted from "Simple Indian Cookery" by Madhur Jaffrey)
1 onion, coarsely chopped
3-4 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1 in piece of fresh root ginger. chopped
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
4 tablespoons olive or groundnut oil
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
12 fenugreek seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 canned tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste
1 teaspoon garam masala
3/4-1 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper
- Put the onion, garlic, ginger and vinegar in a blender or food processor and blend to a smooth paste.
- Put the oil in a large, wide pan, preferably non-stick, and set it over a medium-high heat. When it is very hot, put in the cumin, fennel and fenugreek seeds and let them sizzzle for 5 seconds.
- Quickly pour in the paste from the blender, using a rubber spatula to get it all out. Stir and fry it for 10-15 minutes, until it is golden brown.
- Add the ground coriander, cumin and turmeric and stir for a minute.
- Add the tomatoes, cayenne, garam masala, salt and lots of black pepper. Cook, stirring, for another 2-3 minutes.
- Stir in the water and bring to the boil. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low and simmer very gently for 30 minutes.
- Add the fish in a single layer. Simmer gently, spooning the sauce over the fish, until it has just cooked through.