Coconut Curry Halibut
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I love a good curry and to have one made from scratch is a real treat. It sounds like it would be difficult or time-consuming, but with the help of a blender, it's the work of mere minutes. Coconut Curry Halibut combines beautiful curry flavors with a robust fish that takes 30 minutes or less.
Homemade curry sauce for Coconut Curry Halibut
It's hard to believe that homemade curry sauce is so quick to make and has such few ingredients! Shallots, jalapenos, fresh ginger, lemon peel (or lemongrass if you can find it!), cilantro, lime zest, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, and turmeric ... just reading that list makes my mouth water!
You could certainly use a mortar and pestle to make your curry, but a blender makes it much quicker! Just put everything in the blender jar, mix in a little chicken stock to help the mixture blend, and in a short bit, you have a super tasty curry.
It cooks a bit in a skillet, then the coconut milk and lots of lime zest is added.
It is super creamy and has such a complex flavor. After the sauce has cooked for about 10 minutes, slip the halibut in.
It only takes about 3 or 4 minutes on heat, then the residual heat of the sauce will finish it off. The fish is done when it flakes apart, but is still a little translucent.
The pieces of halibut shown below are about eight ounces each. I cut them in half lengthwise to make four servings.
The garnish for Coconut Curry Halibut
The curry sauce is amazing, but the garnish might be my favorite! It starts with simply caramelizing jalapeno and red onion.
After the jalapeno and onion caramelize, stir in fresh cilantro and small bits of diced lime. Amazing!
How to serve Coconut Curry Halibut
Serve over rice with the halibut on top, plenty of the curry sauce, and the garnish spooned over the top.
Coconut Curry Halibut
- 2 jalapenos, seeds and membranes removed Use only one if you want less heat.
- 4-5 peels from a lemon See notes
- 1/2 cup shallots chopped
- 1 clove garlic chopped
- 2 Tablespoons fresh ginger chopped
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried turmeric or 1 teaspoon grated fresh turmeric
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lime zest I used 2 limes, but it totally depends on the size!
- Chicken or vegetable stock or water
- 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
- 1 Tablespoon fish sauce I like the Red Boat brand.
- 1 pound halibut fillets, cut into 4-ounce portions
FOR THE GARNISH
- oil for frying
- 1 red jalapeno chopped very small
- 2 Tablespoons red onion chopped very small
- 1/3 cup cilantro chopped
- 1 lime peeled and flesh cut into small dice
- salt to season
- Put the jalapenos, lemon peels, shallots, cilantro, garlic, ginger, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, salt, turmeric, and 1 Tablespoon of the lime zest in the jar of a blender.
- Blend, using about ¼ cup of chicken or vegetable stock, or water to help the mixture blend. You'll have to scrape the jar a couple of times, but you are looking for a smooth puree and it will take about three minutes.
- Heat a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add some oil and the curry ingredients from the blender jar. Let it cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, and the rest of the lime zest. Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium low and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the 4-ounce pieces of halibut and let it simmer for 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the residual heat finish cooking the fish while you plate the dish.
- While the curry sauce is cooking for its 10 minutes, start the garnish. Heat the oil in a small skillet. Add the red jalapeno and red onions and let them caramelize, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the cilantro and lime. Season with salt.
- Serve the Coconut Curry Halibut on top of rice with the garnish.
- Use a vegetable peeler to take off just the peel from the lemon. Leave as much pith as possible because it causes bitterness in your dish. If you can get lemongrass, use a couple stalks of it in place of the lemon peel. Chop the part that does not include the woody top.