This is stunning, a little complicated but very worth the effort. I used Barramundi instead of the Sea Bass, skin on and boned. From Nopi the new Ottolenghi book, but with the help of the chef at Nopi, Ramael Scully – born in Malaysia.
620g Desiree Potatoes ( or firm waxy variety) peeled and cut into 2/12 cubes
15g of ghee ( this is available at Everleigh Markets)
8 stems fresh curry leaves(20g)
1/1/2 tbsp yellow mustard seeds
1medium onion, finely diced
4 garlic cloves, finely diced
1ps ground turmeric
2 medium tomatoes halved seeds removed and roughly chopped
10g unsalted butter
100g tamarind pulp
1bsp sunflower oil
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
8 garlic cloves, crushed
12 stems fresh curry leaves
2 large dried red chillies
3 large tomatoes each cut into 6 wedges, 2cm wide.
6 sea bass fillets skin lightly scored ( 2 large fillets of Barramundi)
1tbsp lemon juice
10g coriander leaves
coarse sea salt and black pepper
- Place potatoes in a medium saucepan and cover with salted water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes, until just cooked. drain and set aside.
- Wipe the pan dry and rerun it to a medium heat with the 15g of ghee. When melted, add the 8 stems of curry leaves and mustard seeds and fry for 2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the onion and garlic and fry for another 3 or 4 minutes, until starting to soften. Add the turmeric, tomatoes and cooked potatoes, stir to coat the potatoes with the spices, then cook for a minute or so before adding the butter, i teaspoon of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Cook for a final minute, then set said and just warm up when you need it.
- To make the rasam, pour 900ml of boiling water over the tamarind and set aside for 30 minutes, for the pulp to soften and disintegrate in the water. Use your hands to break up and dissolve the pulp, then strain through a fine mesh sieve and discard the seeds. Put the sunflower oil into a large pot and place on medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and fry for 4-5 minutes, stirring from time to time, until starting to soften. Add the garam masala, 12 stems of curry leaves and chillies and fry for another minute before adding the tomatoes. Pour over the tamarind water, reduce the heat to medium-love and simmer very gently for 15 minutes; take care that it does not come to the boil, as this will cause the tamarind pulp to split. Add 2 teaspoons of salt, stir through and set aside. You can leave this to infuse for a few hours and then, when ready to serve, there are two options. For a more formal look, strain the rasam for a clear broth for a more rustic and informal look, you can skip the straining and keep the onion, garlic, curry leaves and chillies in the pot. Either way, you’ll need to return it to the stove and warm it through before serving.
- To cook the fish, place a large frying pan on a medium heat and add the ghee. Use 1/1/2 teaspoons of salt to sprinkle over the skin side of all 6 fish, along with a grind of black pepper. When the ghee has melted, add the fish to the pan, skin-side down: you might need to do this in two batches so as not to overcrowd the pan. Fry for 3-4 minutes, until crisp and golden-brown. Use another 1/1/2 teaspoons of salt to sprinkle on the flesh side of the fish, along with some more black pepper, then flip the fish over and cook foa final minute. Remove from the heat and drizzle with lemon juice.
- To serve, spoon the warm potatoes into a bowl. Place apish on top or alongside, skin-side up, and ladle over the rasam. Finish with a sprinkle of coriander, if using, and server.
Bowl by Mud
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