This traditional recipe that involves making your own spice paste with a mortar and pestle will make every minute of it worth the effort. Besides the distinctive aromas of lemongrass, turmeric and ginger, garnish with coriander and green onions. With a white fish like barramundi, you really can never have too many flavours.
- 2 lemongrass stalks, outer layers removed, trimmed and sliced finely
- 3 coriander stalks, roots trimmed and leaves separated
- 2 tsps ground turmeric
- 2 tsps ground ginger
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 3 tsps grated palm sugar
- 2 tbsps fish sauce
- 2 tbsps vegetable oil
- 1 brown onion, chopped finely
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 cup fish stock
- 4 180 g frozen barramundi fillets, thawed
- 1 bunch choy sum, trimmed and cut into 10 cm lengths
- 2 green onions (shallots), sliced
- Steamed rice and lime wedges, to serve
Make spice paste; place lemongrass and coriander roots in mortar and crush to a paste with pestle. Add ground turmeric, ginger, cumin, palm sugar and fish sauce. Grind to combine.
Make sauce; heat vegetable oil in saucepan over medium-high heat. Fry paste for 2 mins until fragrant. Stir in onion and cook for 3 mins. Add coconut milk and fish stock; bring to a simmer.
Cook fish; gently lay fish into sauce and cover saucepan with lid. Reduce heat to medium and poach fish for 8 mins until nearly cooked. With 4 mins to go, add choy sum, re-cover pan and cook until tender.
To serve, garnish fish with coriander leaves and green onions. Serve with steamed rice and lime wedges.
TIP This dish is great for those who love fragrant Asian flavours, but could do without the spicy heat.