Wednesday 26 April 2017

Masala Oven Grilled Fish 印度马萨拉蕉叶烤鱼

I have done many versions of oven grilled fish but nothing from the Indian cuisine. I was at Mustaffa Shopping Centre and came across many interesting spices. I was all excited to grab some and started whipping up my first Indian flavoured dish -  Masala Oven Grilled Fish 印度马萨拉蕉叶烤鱼

I have reiterated many times in this blog that I like using Barramundi (金目鲈) for oven grill. The fish meat remains tender most of the time. If you like the Indian tandoori and masala taste and smell, this non-spicy Masala Oven Grilled Fish 印度马萨拉蕉叶烤鱼 would not disappoint you. I marinated and grilled it in spices, herbs and coconut milk (I'll do it with yogurt next time :)). And wrapped it with banana leaf during grill. This' not a small fish...almost 1 kg...but not a difficult dish to cook. My family super loved it! The entire fish was gone before I knew it!

Ingredients (enough for 4 pax with rice and other dishes) :
  • 1 Barramundi (aka sea bass) of about 1 kg  
  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp grounded black pepper or black peppercorns
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tbsp tandoori masala powder (can use turmeric powder to replace)
  • 65 ml coconut cream or yoghurt
  • lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  • 15 pcs mint leaves
  • 20 pcs curry leaves
  • 1 stalk coriander (chopped)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil or other cooking oil

(tsp = teaspoon; tbsp = tablespoon) 

Method :
  1. Clean fish and rub a little salt on the surface and inside of the fish.
  2. Roast mustard seeds in a pan or in the oven. They're ready when the seeds start to pop from the roast pan. If you are using black peppercorns instead of grounded black pepper, roast them too.
  3. Roast curry leaves in the same manner.
  4. Combine coriander leaves, mint leaves, coconut cream, salt, mustard seeds, grounded black pepper, tandoori masala powder/turmeric powder, lime juice and coconut/cooking oil in a blender and grind into a smooth paste.
  5. Treat banana leaf for use. Clean and hold the banana leaf over gas flame for a short while. After this process, the banana leaf would not break when fold.
  6. Spread treated banana leaf over a large plate and transfer fish onto it.
  7. Use a spoon to spread blended mixture onto the inside and surface of the fish.
  8. Insert a few pieces of mint leaves and curry leaves into the stomach of the fish.
  9. Fold and wrap fish and sauces in banana leaf. Use a woven string to fasten and secure.
  10. Leave to marinate for 30 minutes.  
  11. Pre-heat oven to 180C, Grill - Fan Assist mode.
  12. Put wrapped fish on a baking tray and send to bake at 180C between 25 to 45 minutes, depending on size of fish and thickness of meat. My fish was not fully cooked by 25 minute, it needed about 40 minutes. 
  13. Remove fish from oven when time's up. To check if fish is cooked, open up the banana leaf and insert a bamboo skewer into the fish meat, if the bamboo skewer comes out clean, the fish is cooked and ready to be served.
  14. Garnish and serve whilst hot with rice and other dishes. 

(scroll to bottom of page, click on "Print" or "PDF" icon for printer friendly recipe)

As what a friend aptly described this Masala Oven Grilled Fish 印度马萨拉蕉叶烤鱼, the banana leaf gave it fragrance, the coconut cream/yogurt tenderised the meat and the garam masala made it tasty. I can only say I couldn't agree with her more!



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