I love to make my own curry pastes, but sometimes I just don’t have time or am not in the mood to make it from scratch. There are some really good curry pastes available at the Asian supermarkets, better than the ones in regular supermarkets, I find.
For this dish I used a red Penang Curry paste, all you need is a finely chopped onion, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, palm or brown sugar, a squeeze of lime and coconut milk to make a proper sauce. For the veggies I added mushrooms, peppers and courgette because that’s what I still had lying around in the fridge.
For the fish I used cod, but pretty much any whit fish will do, breaded in panko bread crumbs and shallow fried a few minutes in peanut oil. The little dipping sauce of fish sauce, sugar, chili and mint drizzled over the top is the perfect finishing touch.
If you’d like to keep it vegetarian or vegan you can replace the fish with deep fried crispy tofu and the fish sauce with light soy sauce.
This recipe is from Lazyish Meals, all I adjusted was add some veggies and added lime juice to the drizzle sauce.
Thai Red Curry with Crispy Fried Cod Drizzled with Mint & Bird’s Eye Chili Sauce
- The curry
- 1-2 tbsp peanut or vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp red curry paste
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, grated
- 2 cm ginger, peeled and julienned
- 1 can of coconut milk
- 2 tbsp fish sauce (more to taste)
- 1 tbsp brown sugar (more to taste)
- Juice of half a lime, start with less, add more to your liking (optional)
- Optional: 2 whole kaffir lime leaves and a crushed lemongrass stalk
- The fish
- ± 2-3 cups cooking oil (depending on the size fo your pan)
- 2 cod or other white fish fillets (± 120 g each)
- 2 cups panko bread crumbs
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 egg, a drop of water added and lightly beaten
- To serve
- Steamed white rice
- 2 tbsp mint, chopped
- 2 Thai red chili, finely chopped and deseeded if you'd like to reduce the heat (optional)
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- Juice of half a lime (more to taste)
Prep the fish
Start by prepping your fish so you're good to fry as soon as sauce is almost ready.
Cut your fish in ± 2 x 4 cm strips and season well with pepper and salt.
Crack your egg in a bowl, add ± 1 tbsp of cold water and whisk (see notes).
Put your flour and panko breadcrumbs in 2 separate shallow bowls, season the flour. Set aside.
Cook the rice according to the package (see notes).
Gather all your ingredients.
In a medium sauce pan or wok heat some oil and add the onions, stir fry for ± 2 minutes until translucent and fragrant.
Add the garlic and ginger, stir fry for ± 1 minute until translucent and fragrant.
Add the curry paste and stir through well until loosened, ± 2 minutes
When colour of the paste has darkened lightly add in the vegetables, give it a good mix so everything is coated with the curry past, ± 1 minutes.
Add the coconut milk (and if using the kaffir lime leaves and lemongrass stalk), mixing everything until combined.
When it's starting to simmer add 2 tbsp fish sauce and 1 tbsp brown sugar. Taste and adjust to your liking. Add a squeeze of lime if you'd like it a bit more tangy.
Turn down the heat and let simmer on the lowest heat to keep warm while moving on to the fish, keep stirring now and then.
Frying the fish
In a small sauce pan heat ± 2-3 cm of oil. To check if the oil is hot enough through in a panko bread crumb or a small piece of bread. If it starts sizzling an foaming right away you're good to go.
Place the bowls in the order of working (I worked from left to right): 1. Flour | 2. Whisked egg | 3. Panko bread crumbs.
Working with 1 hand so you always have 1 clean hand, coat the fish in the seasoned flour, dust of any excess flour. Then coat in eggs wash and coat in bread crumbs.
Carefully place the fish pieces 1 by 1 in the hot oil, dropping them in away from you so no oil can splash on you.
It's important not to overcrowd the pan, so you will probably need to do this in batches.
Cook for 2-3 minutes until browned and crispy and let drain on a paper towel while you make the rest.
Dipping / Drizzle sauce
In a bowl mix together 2 tbsp fish sauce, 1 tsp brown sugar, 2 finely chopped bird's eye chili and a squeeze of lime juice. Taste and adjust to your liking.
Finley julienne the mint and add this to the sauce.
Serve this drizzled over the fish and the curry. Enjoy!
- Add a drop of water to the egg before whisking. The water will help loosen it up more so only a thing coating will stock to the fish.
- For 2 people I add 1 cup of basmati rice to a pan, add some salt and cover with boiling water from the kettle. The water should come to ±2 cm above the rice. Put the lid on, bring back to the boil, turn heat down. Cook for 8 minutes. Drain in a colander and return to the pan, let steam with lid on for minimum of 8 minutes. It stays warm for quite a while, so I always like to start with putting on the rice before moving on to the curry.