A blog to document my ramblings and insights into my obsession with South Indian food and culture! As well as an avenue to share my food knowledge with you, posting recipes new and old

To start us off let me share with you the first Keralan dish I truly nailed and the start of my obsession. Meen Curry!! A spicy coconut fish curry that punches you in the face yet is surprisingly subtle.

Curry Paste - In a mortar and pestle bash to a smooth paste
100g Peeled Ginger
50g Garlic
Roots from one bunch coriander

Spices - Measure out seperately
1 dstp Mustard seeds
1/3 dstp Ground fenugreek
4 dstp Kashmiri chilli powder
3 dstp Ground Coriander (I reccomend grinding fresh from seed for best flavour)
1 dstp Ground Tumeric

5 pieces wet kokum (you can find at you local indian grocer it is the salted fermented skin of the mangosteen)
1.2L Coconut Milk (Look for a brand that doesn't contain emulsifiers and has a fat content of at least 18g per 100ml)
350g shallots
6 sprigs curry leaves
5 x 150g Spanish mackeral fillets
100g Coconut oil

Soak Kokum in 200ml boiling water

Heat coconut oil on a medium heat in a large thick bottomed pot until hot. Add mustard seeds and cook until they have popped like popcorn and a sweat aroma comes from them.

Add Shallots, pinch of salt and curry leaves and fry at medium heat until shallots are sweet and translucent.

Add curry paste and continue to cook at low heat until oil comes out. Taste at this stage the paste should still taste quite fresh but the acidity should have cooked off.

Add spices and cook at low heat until oil comes out approximately 3 minutes.

Add kokum and the liquid it was soaked in and the coconut milk and bring to a simmer for 2 minutes. Add salt to taste at this point.

Gently add your pieces of fish into your sauce and cook on low heat gently for 3-5 minutes depending on the size of your cutlets until almost done but not quite.  Turn off and put a lid on and let it sit for 10-15 minutes for all of the flavor to absorb into the fish.

Serve with rice.

Photo Credit - Bernard Winter

Photo Credit - Bernard Winter