I got this recipe from a World Fish calendar (one recipe per month)–some time between 2000-2003! My regret is that I did not take note of the country from which the recipe came from–does anybody know? If this is from your country/region–THANK YOU–the dish is SUPERB.
I did a slight variation to the recipe–I used a whole fish, I just estimated the garlic, I fried the cumin first until they were crackling, and I added spinach to wilt at the end. But I’m typing below the recipe proportions as it was published for my future reference:
butter and oil for sauteing
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
15g garlic (minced)
1 onion (julienned)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin powder
200ml coconut milk
350g fish fillets
Optional: spinach or other preferred veggies
1. In a skillet, fry the cumin seeds until they crackle
2. Add the garlic to saute, then the onion
3. When onion has softened, add paprika, then turmeric, then the cumin powder
4. Add half (100ml) of the coconut milk*
5. When the coconut milk starts to simmer, add the fish
6. When the fish is cooked, add the other half of the coconut milk–once it’s melted and heated, add the spinach to wilt by submerging it in the stew.
*The reason why the other half of the coconut milk is added at the end is to get a creamy consistency and a sweet taste–if you prefer it that way (coconut milk when cooked for a longer time becomes oily). In the Philippines, this is what we call kakang gata–the virgin coconut creme–pure & unadulterated, freshly squeezed from grated, raw coconut meat of a browned nut.