Lately I’ve been watching a lot of travel shows that involve copious amounts of eating along the way- think anything and everything Anthony Bourdain is in only because of all the interesting places he visits–but, definitely not what he eats or drinks. Some of the dishes that he tries are, in my opinion, a lesson in what not to eat. At the very least, it’s education about the vast amounts of food people around the world eat that are completely and utterly a figment of our imagination here in the Midwest. I wouldn’t want his job of eating some pretty stomach-churning (and not so halal) things, but I would love his job of traveling, cooking and eating the halal stuff, for sure…
Backing away from Netflix and right back into the kitchen and I am craving some spicy Thai food- or anything spicy, at least somewhat. All the shows with such great seafood dishes reminds me that the world does offer up some incredibly great seafood recipes I just don’t see very often in restaurants around me, but I like to try making them myself. The problem is, I am usually the only one who ends up eating fish dishes because so few people are turned on by seafood. I think it’s ALL in how it’s made- the resulting flavor is the key factor that’s going to attract eaters, so perhaps just make a great dish without discussing all the details of what’s in it and what it looked like prior to cooking it. At least that’s the lesson I’ve learned…
I mean, none of the ingredients below look unappetizing, do they? No. But we’re not cooking with a whole fish that has to be cleaned up. The only somewhat scary ingredient to anyone not used to fish or seafood dishes is the fish sauce- I can just imagine telling someone that it’s an ingredient in a dish without explaining that it’s not so bad- just ground up salty anchovies or something similar–and that means you don’t need to add salt to your dish. Great, isn’t it?
For this recipe, which totally satisfied my craving for something nice and spicy but not too hot, I chose Alaskan cod in pieces as my main seafood ingredient. I like the because it takes the work out of slicing it up yourself and they’re found frozen which typically means the fish is freshly frozen rather than the ‘fresh’ fish at the grocery store that has simply been defrosted after arriving on ice and frozen from the transport trucks.
I found found this particular fish in nice chunks is at Trader Joe’s- next time I make this dish I’d probably cut them even a bit smaller just because I don’t like huge chunks of fish on my plate, but to each his own. You could even get a large piece of cod and put it in without cutting at all and it would be fine, too.
For the vegetables, I chose an Asian Vegetable Stir Fry mix which you can find at most grocery stores or just make it yourself with equal parts of sliced round carrots, broccoli, red and green pepper, red onion, snap peas, mushrooms, baby corn and water chestnuts, if you like. Leave out what you don’t.
After cooking the vegetables then fish in a neutral oil (i.e. sunflower), I add the fish sauce and Saffron Road Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce. You can find it at many different stores – just take a look at their store locator on their website for a
The Simmer Sauce is gluten free and halal and contains the ethnic Thai flavors you would want in this dish like lemongrass, coconut milk, ginger, and paprika. It also adds a lot of nice moisture to the dish, which is important when you’re not cooking with much fat, as in this case.
To give the dish a nice kick, I added two heaping spoons of fire roasted green chilies. You can find small cans of this stuff in the Mexican aisle of most grocers. In my case, I got these from Trader Joe’s. Of course.
I let this simmer for some time (around 15 minutes) while my wonderfully fragrant Jasmine rice was cooking at the same time. Once they’re both done, it’s a really nice meal on a plate.
Perfect for dinner. Even on a weekday.
I’ll be giving away a packet of another one of Saffron Road’s Simmer Sauces this week, so stay tuned and make sure you’re subscribed to our newsletter to find out about all the new and exciting things we have coming up, insha’Allah.
- 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
- 1 pound Asian stir fry vegetable mix (equal amounts of broccoli, carrot, mushrooms, red onion, snap peas, baby corn)
- 1-1/4 pound Alaskan cod pieces (can be frozen or thawed)
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 1/8 cup fish sauce
- 1 packet Saffron Road Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce
- 2 teaspoons fire roasted green chiles
- In a large saute pan, gently heat the sunflower oil. Add the vegetables and sauce until nicely browned, about 5 minutes.
- Add the pieces of fish (frozen or thawed) and the sesame oil and fish sauce. Cover the pan and let it cook down for about 3 minutes. Remove the lid and add the Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce.
- Raise the heat slightly and let the sauce begin to bubble.
- Add the green chilies and reduce the heat. Cover the pan again, and let simmer for another 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from heat and serve with Jasmine rice or some sort of sticky white rice.
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 pound Asian stir fry vegetable mix (equal amounts of broccoli, carrot, mushrooms, red onion, snap peas, baby corn)
1 1/4 pound Alaskan cod pieces
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1/8 cup fish sauce
1 packet Saffron Road Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce
2 teaspoons fire roasted green chiles
Salute until browned
add 2 teaspoon sesame oil
Add Simmer Sauce packet
Simmer for 15 minutes
Serve with Jasmine rice