Food is indeed a reflection of a region’s unique geography, culture and lifestyle. The cuisine of Goa is the very definition of this wonderful culinary tradition. Famous for its distinctive dishes, Goan food is a delicious combination of exotic Indian spices and traditional Portuguese cooking styles. It is old world fusion cuisine at its finest.
Goa is a serene and tranquil oasis located on the southwest coast of India in the Konkan region. Its cuisine is characterized by the abundance of fresh seafood and succulent coconuts.
My family ancestry originates from Goa, as does my love for seafood. This particular dish has always been a family favorite. Any firm white fish will do for this recipe, the key is to always choose fish that is fresh.
GOAN FISH CURRY
Yield: 4 servings
4 medium size fillets of firm white fish (tilapia, snapper, halibut, cod...)
1 cup of shallots (finely sliced)
1 tbsp of fresh ginger (finely minced)
1 tbsp of garlic (finely minced)
1 tbsp of green chilies (finely minced)
8-10 fresh curry leaves
˝ tsp of red chili powder (add to taste)
˝ tsp of turmeric
˝ tsp garam masala
˝ tsp of cumin powder (seeds should be lightly toasted & finely ground)
1 tsp of coriander powder (seeds should be lightly toasted & finely ground)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup of coconut milk (light variety may be used)
juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp of canola or vegetable oil
4 tbsp fresh cilantro leaves (finely chopped for garnish)
Trim the fish and cut into 1-1.5 inch pieces. Lightly sprinkle with salt & pepper, mix well and set aside until needed (refrigerating if necessary).
Heat the oil in a large skillet or saute pan over medium-high heat until hot. Add the shallots and saute for 2-3 minutes until slightly golden in color. Then add the ginger, garlic, green chilies and curry leaves; continue to saute for an additional 2-3 minutes. Add the spices (red chili powder, turmeric, garam masala, ground cumin & ground coriander powder). Stir in the coconut milk and reduce the heat to medium-low. Season with lime juice, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce and carefully add the fish pieces. Simmer just 5-6 minutes or until the fish is cooked. Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve with fragrant jeera rice or saffron pulao.