Pan Fried Fish, Black Lentils and Coconut Sauce

by grainnep

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I always go for a bit of heat in my food when the weather gets bad and so this week when Storm Barney battered us and I needed something warming and comforting this was a meal based on recipes I have cooked separately but never together. My oh My how well this worked, the spiced lentils were great with the fish and the sauce is a wonderful blend of hot sour spicy and sweet- perfect for a cold windy night. Packed full of health giving spices for a heart warming and great tasting dinner. This won’t take long to put together, get the lentils on and the sauce will take about 10 minutes to have ready and the fish even less.

Pan Fried Hake, Black Lentils and Coconut Sauce – Serves 2

Spiced Black Beluga Lentils
4 oz black Lentils -I soak them overnight
1 pt Chicken Stock
1 Tsp Cumin
1 Tsp Garam Masala

Cover the lentils with water, bring to the boil quickly then drain off this water.
Pour in the chicken stock and spices and bring to the boil, simmer gently until cooked.
These black lentils took about 20 minutes but varieties vary so check them as you don’t want a pot of mush
Keep the lentils warm or if you are making in advance, set aside to cool then cover.

Coconut Sauce
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 tbsp each of chopped and mashed ginger and garlic
1 small chopped chilli – deseeded if you dont want it too hot
1 tbsp tomato passata
1 400ml tin of cocomut milk
To finish – chopped fresh coriander and chopped spring onions

Add the oil to the pan over a medium hot heat
Add the ginger garlic and chili, then cook out for a few minutes
Add the turmeric and passata, again cook for another minute, add a splash of water if it is getting to dry
Add the coconut milk and stir to combine everything, bring the sauce the boil then reduce to gently simmer until it has
thickened. Then season with 1 tbso each of fish sauce, soy sauce and some palm sugar or brown sugar and the juice of a wedge of lime. Keep seasoning until you are happy with the sauce tasting sweet sour and hot. Meanwhile get the fish ready:-

Pan Fried Hake
2 fillets of hake skinned de-boned, dried with kitchen paper and seasoned
Heat 2 tbsp oil on a hot pan
Add the hake and cook over a medium high heat until golden brown
Add 1 tbsp butter to the pan, flip the fillets over and baste with the butter oil mix
When it is cooked, take out of the pan onto a piece of kitchen paper and keep warm
Reheat the lentils if you cooked them earlier
Add the coriander and spring onion to the coconut sauce then ladle into 2 bowls
Add the lentils into the centre of the bowl
Top with a piece of fish and sprinkle over some more fresh coriander and serve