Keeping it real … Real Ale
Making curry from scratch is as good (if not better due to satisfaction) than any takeaway curry, not to mention way healthier. I used to be a regular visitor of the Café Bangla in Brick Lane before it changed and my usual pick was always a prawn saag, but I have never cooked a fish or prawn curry ever before. Taking inspiration from a few different recipes and a few of my own additions I put together this Duvel Cod and Prawn Curry and without blowing my own trumpet too much, it was one of the best curry dishes I have cooked. Usually I wouldn’t choose to eat cod, I try to eat other fish as we rinse cod but we had some in the freezer that was reduced that needed cooking, next time I make this I will use basa. Spice levels can be adjusted with the curry powder and the amount of chilli you use in the paste. Foolishly I only picked up one bottle of Duvel at Mozza’s so couldn’t have a bottle with dinner but Thornbridge’s Lukas Helles Lager went well with the curry as it turned out fairly spicy.
Duvel Cod & Prawn Curry
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
2 teaspoons mustard seeds
2 medium sized chillis or 1 birdseye chilli chopped
3 cloves garlic chopped
Thumb size piece of ginger chopped
1 red onion sliced
1 ½ tablespoon of medium curry powder
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
Bottle of Duvel (or other Belgian pale ale)
250ml pack of coconut cream
Juice of 1 lime
2 teaspoons fish sauce
15 curry leaves
2 bay leaves
1 yellow pepper sliced
Sugar snap peas
Cod fillets diced
Heap tablespoon of cornflower mixed with a splash of warm water mixed
Big handful of chopped coriander
Dry roast the cumin seeds, coriander seeds and 1 teaspoons worth of the mustard seeds till you can smell them in the kitchen. Remove from the pan and grind in a mestor and morter. When the seeds are smashed add the chopped garlic, chilli and ginger then mix with a tiny bit of olive oil till you get a nice paste.
In the same pan as the seeds were dry roasted in add some olive oil and carmalise the onions for about 5 minutes. Stir in the turmeric, curry powder and remaining teaspoons of mustard seeds. Add the paste from the pester and morter and mix well. Cook for a further 5 minutes.
Stir in the cocanut cream and bottle of Duvel and mix well. Then add fish sauce (be really careful when pouring this, too much can destroy a dish!) and curry leaves. Make the cornflower mix and add to the pan stirring well as you pour. Stir well and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add the sugar snaps (remember to trim them from their stringy bits unlike I did!) and cook for another 5 minutes.
Add the diced cod fillet and prawns. Cook for about 8-10 minutes till you can see the fish is cooked throughout. Once finished stir in the chopped coriander. Serve with rice (put the rice on when adding the sugar snap peas).
Disclaimer – I bought the bottle of Duvel and all ingredients myself. Duvel have no input on this…