I love it when the chaggim fall in the middle of the week, and we get a little more vacation than usual. The downside is that I feel like I am constantly cooking meals. The key here is finding quick and tasty meals to make so we can spend less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying our time in the Succah.
My clever husband was meandering through the supermarket a couple of weeks ago and stumbled on fresh limes from Tekoa Farms, purveyors of exotic, specialized fruit and vegetables. This was an exciting moment as I’ve always wanted to be able to get hold of limes in Israel, and this is the first time. When life gives you limes, you make Thai food!
As this is the season of Succah entertaining, I had stocked up on the recently readily available South African hake fillets imported by Sunfish (another exciting moment in Israel’s food retailing history). This firm, white fish is perfect when matched with the tangy tastes of Thai curry. The recipe I threw together on the fly was so quick to make and the results spoke for themselves – a very empty serving dish within minutes.
The hake fillets are great for us Israeli and South African cooks, but any firm white fish fillet will work well with this recipe.
THAI FISH CURRY
1 kg (2 lbs) white fish fillets cut into individual serving-sized pieces
2-3 teaspoons oil
2-3 tablespoons freshly chopped or grated ginger
5 cloves of garlic crushed
1 mild red or green chili finely chopped (according to taste – this curry is not a spicy one.) Note: Do not touch the chili with your bare hands. Either use gloves or use a fork to hold the chili as you chop it. If you do get any on your hands, wash them very well before touching any part of your body. Chili residue burns like crazy!
500 ml (17 fl oz) coconut milk
Juice of 1 lime or a small lemon
½ teaspoon of turmeric powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
3-4 peeled and chopped fresh tomatoes (don’t use canned for this)
3-4 chopped green onions
¼ cup freshly chopped coriander leaves + a few whole coriander leaves for garnish
How to do it
1. Heat the oil in a wok
2. Add ginger and saute for a few minutes. Add the chili and saute for another few minutes, making sure they don’t start to burn. Add the garlic and saute briefly, making sure the garlic doesn’t burn.
3. Add the coconut milk, lime/lemon juice, turmeric, salt, sugar and tomatoes, stir and bring to the boil. Allow to simmer for a few minutes. (Tip: You can make the sauce ahead of time and reheat it and cook the fish just before you want to serve it.)
4. Bring the liquid to the boil and add the fish. Reduce the heat until the liquid is simmering, cover and cook until fish is tender, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add coriander and green onion and pour into a serving dish.
5. Garnish with the fresh coriander leaves and serve with white rice.
Serves about 6.