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Versatile Quick Curry Sauce for chicken, fish or vegetables

Quick Barramundi Curry

Quick Barramundi Curry

Inspiration for menu testing and development comes to me from various sources. Beside my well stocked library of cookbooks I have a plastic sleeve of magazine clippings and an overstuffed electronic file of recipes saved from blogs, websites and online publications. The recipes in the electronic file are a random bunch but if I were to categorise the contents, the largest group by far would be those that are quick in execution and only need fuss free accompaniments to turn them into a yummy week night dinner. 

I admit it’s rare for me to make a new recipe verbatim. Food intolerances have a lot to answer for, but so does personal choice. For me flavour and pleasure are always the number one priority, closely followed by the use of natural ingredients and economy. What I cook is my own unique style.

 This was once a full blown fish curry recipe, but having recognised the versatility of the sauce I’ve adapted it to become a reliable and quick meal base that is fabulous in many guises. 

I’ve added sautéed chicken thighs to the sauce, chick peas, steamed vegetables and boiled eggs, fish alone and once in an impulse to spontaneously and gloriously feed eight friends, I emptied my freezer of seafood and threw in a mixture of white fleshed fish, salmon, prawns and prawn head stock. It’s a delicious curry that’s roundly spiced, rich, complex and satisfying.

Cooking chunks of fresh fish in the prepared sauce means I can have dinner on the table in 20 minutes, that’s 10 minutes prep time for the sauce, 10 minutes cooking time for the fish. Serve the curry spooned onto a bed of steamed basmati rice and accompany them with simply cooked vegetables.

Don’t be limit yourself to my ingredients list, apply your own personal touch.

This sauce freezes well for a month.

Quick Cook-In Curry Sauce to serve 4

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 tablespoon garlic infused oil

12-15 fresh curry leaves

1 teaspoon fennel seeds

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon crushed dried red chilli or to taste

2 tablespoons grated root ginger

3 roma tomatoes, diced

2 teaspoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon sea salt or to taste

1 teaspoon castor sugar

1 cup of well flavoured stock

165g can coconut milk

Juice of a lime

600g white fleshed fish

OR 8 boneless chicken thighs, diced and browned

OR 4 cups steamed vegetables, a mix of potato, sweet potato, peas, beans, pumpkin, broccoli plus 1  can chick peas, drained and rinsed 

AND/OR 6 boiled eggs, peeled and halved

In a large saute pan gently warm the oils. Add the fennel seeds and curry leaves and saute until toasty and fragrant.

Add the ground spices and stir them over the heat for a few seconds.

Add the ginger, chilli, tomatoes, tomatoes paste and stock.

Bring the pan to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the tomatoes collapse.

Add the coconut milk and reheat the pan. 

At  this point add chunks of fish OR sautéed chicken thigh, OR steamed vegetables 

Return the sauce to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir through the lime juice then taste the sauce.

Adjust the salt, chilli and lime balance to taste.

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

Serve with steamed rice.

About ladyredspecs

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia. My love of good food drives me as a cook, a reader, a traveller, an artist and but mostly as an eater. I cooked professionally for many years but have no formal training. Simply guided by a love of eating good food, respect for ingredients and an abhorrence of artificial additives, I cook instinctively applying the technical know how acquired by experience. I hope you enjoy what I share Sandra AKA ladyredspecs

26 comments on “Versatile Quick Curry Sauce for chicken, fish or vegetables

  1. Lisa @ cheergerm
    November 7, 2018

    This looks delicious, our fishmonger has been getting in wild caught barramundi lately and it’s so good. Would be beaut in this, got to get me a curry plant.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 8, 2018

      Hi Cheery 😘 Yes, nothing like wild caught barra. We first bought it on the wharf at Darwin years ago, very hard to go back to the farmed stuff. Enjoy

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Glenda
    August 11, 2018

    Sauce looks delicious and yes we have a curry plant in a pot which we’ve had for several years and heaps of barramundi in the freezer so will definitely give this a go. What kind of system or app do you store your online recipes.I have recipes everywhere online and I feel very disorganized.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      August 11, 2018

      I save everything as PDF files on IBooks

      Like

    • ladyredspecs
      August 11, 2018

      Sorry didn’t mean that send, anyway, then I have it divided into categories. It’s not perfect but at least it’s all in the one place. If a recipe pops up while I’m on the laptop I email myself the link then open it on the Ipad. Hope that helps 😀

      Like

  3. chef mimi
    August 11, 2018

    Beautiful. I finally had barramundi when we were in Australia – such a wonderful fish! I love the ingredients in the sauce, although sometimes I’d use coconut milk, but other times some kind of cream. The good news is, I finally have two, thriving curry plants! I waited too long to order them but now I have them!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      August 11, 2018

      Thanks Mimi. Your curry plant will love being trimmed regularly to encourage it to become dense and bushy. Keep the trimmings in the freezer and they will always be at your fingertips for delicious meals like this.

      Like

  4. Mackay Sherry
    August 10, 2018

    It sounds like a very delicious and handy sauce to have in the freezer. I do love a tasty curry. I too have heaps of recipes in folders and on my computer and in books. Phew. I need a lifetime to make them all. Cheers sherry

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      August 11, 2018

      The enormous stash of recipes doesn’t stop me collecting but I’m more and more attracted to fuss free food. Hope you’re feeling better

      Like

  5. Ardys
    August 10, 2018

    This sounds perfect for my taste and intolerances too, Sandra. Look forward to trying it soon. I even grow my own curry leaves!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Debi @ An Evolving Life
    August 10, 2018

    You must be a mind reader. I’ve been scouring the internet for a fish curry sauce. This looks great and since it is versatile, a keeper for many occasions. A must make (soon) once I get those curry leaves. Hurrah, now have a source for them here in Athens.

    Liked by 1 person

    • ladyredspecs
      August 10, 2018

      Great, curry leaves are wonderful and there are no substitutes, glad I got the timing right, enjoy…

      Like

  7. Gather and Graze
    August 10, 2018

    Love the sound of this very versatile curry sauce Sandra. Delicious! I keep meaning to look into buying a little potted curry tree from the nursery… it would be fabulous to have the leaves on hand.

    Like

  8. Ron
    August 9, 2018

    This sounds like a great sauce to keep on hand. Curry leaves might be difficult to find up this way. Could one substitute curry power?

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      August 10, 2018

      Hi Ron, there really is no substitute for the flavour of curry leaves. Find some dried leaves if possible, but failing that, make the recipe without.

      Like

  9. Sue
    August 9, 2018

    Tasty!

    Like

  10. Eha
    August 9, 2018

    *smile* At the moment I so need my life, including cooking, being made simple! This sounds like a vey practical way not to spend non-available hours in the kitchen! Don’t use curry leaves nearly often enough. nor sugar . . . shall try soonest . . .

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      August 9, 2018

      The sugar ia just to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes. Let you palate be the judge. Curry leaves on the other hand have no substitute, a buy them fresh and keep them in the freezer with no loss of flavour. A simple life is the stuff of dreams…

      Like

  11. creativeshare
    August 9, 2018

    Just perfect, Sandra… thank you!

    Like

  12. Francesca
    August 9, 2018

    This is what I need, a reliable all round sauce for anything that comes my way. Thanks.

    Like

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