Preparation / Directions:
* 1/2-inch thick and about 5-1/2 ounces each
This simple classic from the coastal region of southern India makes an elegant entree for a fancy dinner.
Place fish in a shallow dish and rub well with lemon juice. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes.
Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in a heavy frying pan over medium-high heat. Add fish and cook until just opaque, about 2 minutes per side. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the same pan. Add curry leaves, onion, ginger, chiles and turmeric. Cook until onion is soft, about 3 minutes. Add cumin, coconut and coconut milk. Cook, uncovered, until sauce is slightly thick, 8 to 10 minutes. Gently slip in fish filets, cook 1 or 2 minutes and remove from heat.
Transfer fish to a heated platter. Spoon sauce over and serve.
Note: Dried or fresh curry leaves are available at Indian grocery stores.
Laxmi Hiremath writing in the San Francisco Chronicle, 6/24/93.