The world was quiet and white Sunday night. The snow that began around noon continued until late in the night. That pristine snow covered all the city dirt, grime and old four-foot snow banks. It’s March and spring’s arrival was reported to me from other parts of the country and world. (I imagine spring apple blossoms and make applesauce.)
Sunday turned into a trip to the Indian Subcontinent for me through food. Simply stated, Curry became the counterbalance to a snow day. Richard called me to join him to cook up some Indian curry. (Who am I to turn down cooking curry?)
The fish was prepared with a marinade, marinate recommended 15 minutes to 3 hours to penetrate the fish. (Quick, quick or slow go – either way works.) The marinade was put together in a trice.
On the menu was spicy, pan-fried fish using Perch.
Potato Cauliflower Cashew Curry
2½ tablespoons ground coriander
2½ tablespoons of cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons salt
5 or 6 teaspoons of lime or lemon juice (Richard added more lemon juice and eliminated the water)
6 teaspoons of water
Four 1cm or ½ inch thick pieces o’ fish – your choice – the recipe called for Kingfish, which is a Mackerel and found in different parts of the world. Richard had Perch with pretty red skin.
Mix all the spices into the lemon juice, then place the fish into the dish and coat each side. Set aside. Go to work on the Riata – my job.
To cook the fish:
Rub a heavy frying pan with oil. Cook fish 6-8 minutes on medium to high heat on each side or until browned and just cooked through. This recipe is for 4 pieces of fish.
Riata is made with 1¼ cup of yogurt, ½ of a cucumber cut in half lengthwise then grated, and 2 tablespoons of finely chopped fresh mint. Mix together and refrigerate until everything is cooked. This is the cool to offset the heat of the spices.
Rasps. A little aside about rasps for grated ginger and all manner of grate-able foodstuff and cooking shows. Richard had this rasp, which started me on this discussion. “Where did you get this rasp? It looks like the one I saw Julia and Jacque using on TV.” Richard replied, “At the hardware store.”
I looked for a rasp recently at one of the local cooking specialty stores and didn’t see anything like this. Richard reassured me, “Julia said to go to a hardware store and buy a rasp “It won’t cost you $14.95 like they do at a cooking store.” Richard added. (Okay then, hardware store it is.)
Anyway, I rasped the ginger and the garlic for the potato and cauliflower curry. I was so pleased with the results. By the way, Richard warned me that it was really sharp. Reminder: don’t go past that point where you cut your fingers into the recipe. Nothing like that happened. For a time I was transported by spices wafting in the air from Saffron rice with cinnamon stick, cardamom, black pepper, and a little bit of left over ginger. “Smell this.” (Could you bottle that?) Richard wrote up the recipes on his blog http://anguksuar.wordpress.com/wp-comments-post.php
Curry clears the head of colds and brightens up a snowy day.