Fragrant Cod & White Ale Curry

By QueenSashy
December 16, 2012
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Author Notes: If there is anything that pairs better than beer and honey, it’s beer and curry, yet so very few recipes rely on this pairing. This curry is light and creamy, smooth and very fragrant from the lime, basil, lemongrass, coriander and cardamom. The white ale and a touch of curry paste contribute to a sunny yellow sauce. Be sure to have plenty of rice on hand -- the sauce is difficult to resist to. Feel free to substitute cod with any mild white lean fish -- red snapper, haddock, halibut, pollock, tilapia, all work well.QueenSashy

Serves: 4

  • 1 pound cod filets, cut into 2-inch wide strips
  • 1/2 shallot, minced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 large lemongrass stalk, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest, finely shredded
  • 3/4 teaspoon red curry paste
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 8 basil leaves, plus some more for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 3 teaspoons lime juice
  • Two 12oz bottles wheat beer (I used Blue Moon)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Salt
  1. Put the coriander seeds into a dry heavy skillet and set over medium heat for a few minutes until they become fragrant.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the oil. Add the shallots and garlic and cook over moderate heat for about 2 minutes, until soft. Add the red curry paste, lemongrass, lime zest, coconut milk, fish sauce, coriander seeds, cardamom pods and basil leaves, and simmer over low heat until the sauce becomes very thick and reduces to about 1/3 of the original volume.
  3. In a large saucepan bring the wheat ale to a boil. Add salt, and reduce heat to low until liquid is at a simmer. Add fish in a single layer, making sure it is completely covered with liquid. Poach until cod flesh is opaque and flaky, for about 8 minutes. Remove the fish from the beer, and place into four curry bowls. Reserve 1 ½ cups of the beer and discard the rest.
  4. Mix in the reserved beer into the curry sauce. Strain the sauce, place it back into the saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat for about 5-6 minutes. Mix in the lime juice and pour the sauce over the cod. Garnish with basil leaves and serve.

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