Malaysian Fish Curry

Fish gently cooked in a wok of coconut milk makes a mouthwatering curry for any occasion.


serves 4 - 6
675 g (1 1/2 lb) monkfish, hokey or red snapper fillet
salt, to taste
45 ml (3 tbsp) grated or desiccated coconut
30 ml (2 tbsp) vegetable oil
2.5 cm (1 in) galangal or fresh root ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
2 small red chillies, seeded and finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
5 cm (2 in) lemon grass stalk, shredded
1 piece shrimp paste, 1 cm (1/2 in) square or 15 ml (1 tbsp) fish sauce
400 g (14 oz) canned coconut milk
600 ml (1 pint) 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
2.5 ml (1/2 tsp) turmeric
15 ml (1 tbsp) sugar
juice of 1 lime, or 1/2 lemon
boiled rice, to serve (optional)


1. Cut the fish into large chunks, season with salt and set aside.

2. Dry fry the coconut in a large wok until evenly brown. Add the vegetable oil, galangal or ginger, chillies, garlic and lemon grass and fry briefly. Stir in the shrimp paste or fish sauce. Strain the coconut milk through a sieve, then add to the wok.

3. Add the chicken stock, turmeric, sugar, a little salt and the lime or lemon juice. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add the fish and simmer for 6 - 8 minutes. Stir in the thick part of the coconut milk and simmer to thicken. Garnish with coriander and lime slices and serve with rice, if liked.

Sambal, a fiery hot relish, is traditionally served with this curry.
Mix together 2 skinned and chopped tomatoes, 1 finely chopped onion, 1 finely chopped green chilli and 30 ml (2 tbsp) lime juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper and sprinkle over 30 ml (2 tbsp) grated or desiccated coconut.

What did you think?

26 people have helped to review this recipe. Thankyou!

Amazing! Great find!
posted by Misha @ 06:29AM, 10/25/09
This is a very easy, quick, and delicious recipe. I even substituted dried lemongrass and left out the chili for my boyfriend and it was so delicious. I cooked the monkfish for only 6 minutes before stirring in the thick coconut milk remainder, and the fish was tender with just enough of the flavor soaked in. Try it!
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