Fish in Coconut Cream

If you’ve read my ‘About’ page then you’ll know that I’m Afakasi or Half Caste – half polynesian and half Kiwi. And added to this, I was born and grew up in South East Asia (I’m an Army brat). What’s the point of this explanation? I love love love food. All kinds of food from lots of different cultures and have done so from a very young age. Street food, fancy restaurant food, roasts, curries, takeaways (and the list goes on) – I don’t care as long as it’s delicious.

Long story short – now that we have 3 young kids, we have to create meals at home that are delicious, quick to make and every person in the family is going to eat them.  Cost is also a factor, but sometime we splurge as we did so with our lovely fish for this meal.

Fish in coconut cream is comfort food for me. Every polynesian family has their version of this dish in their repertoire. It is very similar to some Asian fish dishes too. You can swap the lemon juice out for lime juice and serve with some fresh coriander over the top.

Here, I use our standard family recipe, guaranteed to make every family member happy.

I used around 1.5 kg of Terakihi fillets. You can use any firm white fish. I also like Snapper, Guernard or Butter Fish.

I fried the Terakihi in salted butter until cooked and the fish was a nice golden colour.

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Remove from the pan and then add finely chopped garlic and onion to the pan (into the butter that was used for cooking the fish).

For this receipe I used spring onion as it’s lighter and great to add onion flavour without using an actual onion. This is a good tip if you have a tummy easily irritated by onions like some of my family members.

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When fragrant and the garlic is lightly browned, add 1 full tin of coconut cream. For years I used the Samoa brand, but recently I’ve enjoyed the Kara brand as well. It’s as lovely and rich as the Samoa brand.

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Thin the mixture with some stock – I like to use chicken stock. Just a teaspoon or two to taste. Then add some freshly ground black pepper, also to taste. Add a little bit of salt if it needs it, but it may not at this stage.

When the mixture is at the consistency and flavour that you’re happy with, add the fish back in and let everything cook through for a few minutes.

If you like, you can add some tomato quarters at this stage. They add a nice piquancy to the dish.

In this instance however, I added freshly squeezed lemon juice over the top just after removing from the heat.

Serve over white rice with a nice fresh salad on the side.