Cod’s honest truth

Conceived as an easy midweek meal, this tomato & saffron curry with cod in brown butter became an instant classic faster than anything I can remember in recent times.

Plaudits from a very satisfied housemate only reaffirmed my belief in taking the natural next steps.

That is for it be aesthetically plated, drenched in some damn fine natural light, and put under a camera lens, obviously.

[Piri & Tommy Villiers- Beachin, Universal Music, 2022]

Shopping list (serves 4)
Saffron curry:
Large vine-ripened tomatoes x 12
Large white onion x 1
Garlic cloves (minced) x 4
Large red chilli pepper (finely diced) x 1
Ginger (minced) x 20g
Saffron x 1 pinch
Coriander seeds x 1 tsp
Baharat x 1 tsp
Ground turmeric x 1 tsp
Honey x 1tbsp
Coconut milk x 200ml

Cod loin portions (or other meaty white fish) x 4
Salted butter x 50g

Naan breads to serve

Set your oven to 200°C (fan)/220°C, and place the tomatoes on a roasting tray. Roast for 30 minutes. Leave to cool enough for you to be remove the skins. Retain the flesh and any liquid, but discard the skins.

At the same time in a large pan, fry the onion and coriander seeds in some oil for 10 minutes over a medium heat. Add the garlic, chilli, ginger and a good pinch of salt. Continue to cook over a medium heat for five minutes, before adding the baharat and turmeric. Mix well and add the flesh and any liquid of the tomatoes, and cook for a further 10 minutes. Finally, add the saffron and honey, and another pinch of salt.

Blend to a purée, add the coconut milk and keep it simmering over a low heat for 15 minutes, stirring often.

For the cod, simply heat the butter over a low heat in a large frying pan until it starts to brown. Add the pieces of fish, and turn the heat up to medium for five minutes. Baste the pieces with the butter, before carefully removing and adding them to the curry to cook for just another five minutes.

Serve the pieces of buttery, flakey fish with the curry, accompanied by some warm naan bread.



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