Goan-style Fish Curry

Goan-style Fish Curry

But just a little one!

Fishing was slow yesterday and crabs non-existent so when the wind got up (as it seems to every day) we decided to call it quits, pull the nets in and go home. Much excitement when the last net I pulled in had a shark tangled in it. She (no claspers) was close to dead, so we decided to bring her home and eat her. I love shark (or flake as Victorians call it) but it’s hit and miss just how good they’ll be. We’ve found further north that they can get a bit “stringy” and are not at all good eating. Russ can tell the minute he starts to fillet them whether we’ll be keeping them. Lucky this one was OK because I’d already decided we should curry it!

I am a bit funny about “wet” fish dishes, preferring my fish Panko crumbed most often. I hate the thought of fish flaking to bits in a dish as it doesn’t seem at all appetising, and I would NEVER order a “fish” curry out in case they gave me some type of fish I’d normally choose not to eat (Nile Perch or Basa come to mind). And what if it wasn’t fresh?!

So a beautiful piece of just caught shark, with it’s very slight iodine flavour, firm but tender flesh, really makes me happy. And the curry Russ made from our new curry cookbook made me even happier!

I should add in the end, we came home with a mixed bag of fish-a whiting, flathead, a trevally, two herrings and the shark so it was a pleasant couple of hours. The trevally and herring are already smoked, and the remaining shark, flathead and whiting frozen. And while we were fishing, we saw the big white (albino?) sting ray that inhabits the spot where we fish. We hadn’t seen him up until then, and not for a couple of years, so it was good to see him still alive and looking well!

The day before yesterday, I felt a big lazy bite on my line and started to pull in a big lazy something. It was the biggest banjo shark we’ve ever caught here. They are quite good eating, but I just couldn’t do it to him-even a big one doesn’t have that much flesh to make it fair (in my opinion) so back he went!

Earlier this week (last Sunday), we drove to Perth so we could baby sit new grandson Harry. It was his parents first wedding anniversary and they celebrated by going to the movies in the afternoon and then out to dinner in the evening. We had a wonderful time with Harry who was such a good little 6 week old boy for us. He is gorgeous.

Monday and Tuesday night were spent with our daughter-in-law Leah, as son Blair was away in Africa for work. We had a great time with Russ cooking us dinner on the Monday, then dinner out at Tamarind Cambodian restaurant Tuesday.

The trip to Perth also allowed us to do our little bit of Christmas shopping, discuss Christmas/New year plans with Leah, arrange to get Russ’s glasses repaired, buy some new clothes and collect our mail. On the way home, we stopped in Donnybrook for more lovely avocados, tomatoes, cherries and zucchinis. The cherries are in season right now and gorgeous. I thought I might make a relish for Christmas dinner with them, but too late! They are gone!

Back here in Walpole, we decided to extend our stay another 4 days, so we are now here until the 20th, then will overnight at Pinjarra before taking the van up to New Norcia where it’ll holiday for about a month.

Here’s the recipe for the curry as Russ made it. It was very saucy (as we like it) and could easily have taken more fish, or the prawns the original recipe added in.

Goan-style Fish Curry

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon black mustard seeds
  • 12 fresh curry leaves(we used 2 bay leaves, but would normally have curry leaves)
  • 6 shallots finely chopped (we used a small red onion)
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 440 ml can coconut milk
  • 400g firm fleshed white fish fillet, cut into large chunks
  • finely grated rind, and juice of a lime
  • fresh coriander to garnish
Goan-style Fish Curry

Goan-style Fish Curry


  1. Heat a wok over high heat, then add the oil. Add the mustard seeds and stir for about a minute or until they pop.Stir in the curry leaves.
  2. Add the shallots and garlic and stir for about 5 minutes, or until the shallots are golden.
  3. Stir in the spices and salt and stir for a further 30 seconds.
  4. Add the coconut milk, bring to the boil then reduce the heat and stir for about 2 minutes.
  5. Reduce the heat to low, add the fish and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the fish is cooked.
  6. Add half the lime juice, taste and decide if you want more!
  7. Sprinkle with the lime rind and serve. Sprinkle with fresh coriander leaves.

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