Hake Steak, Coconut, red lentil dahl, onion, chilli and mint pickle


Tonight on my way home a came across some hake steaks on offer at the supermarket and created this. I love dahl, its one of my favourite foods, one of my closest friends is Sri Lanken and made me his version which i cant recreate for love nor money. I copy is as best i can, but add extra coconut milk to make it more of a sauce.

Serves 2

2 Hake Steaks, mine were about 200g each i reckon.
About half a tin of coconut milk.
125g Red split lentils
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
heaped tsp of cumin seeds, black onion seeds and coriander seeds + 1/4tsp chilli powder
2 medium tomatoes
1 tsp of brown sugar
handful of chopped mint
2 green chillis
2tbsp cider vineger
Juice of half a lemon

  1. First you need to make the dahl. soak the lentils for a few hours. Drain them and then put them in a pan and cover with boiling water. Simmer for about 6 minutes until they have absorbed all the water. Set aside
  2. Dry fry the spices in a clean pan until they start to pop. Add a little oil and fry the onions and garlic. When it comes to the amount of chilli, add as much or as little as you like. Once soft, add the tomatoes (chopped, i like to keep all the skin and seeds in but you can remove the skins and seeds if you wish. The chef in me tells me to but i dont want to.). Add the sugar and then the lentils.
  3. Now you need to add the coconut milk in stages until you have the consistency you want so have cooked down all the ingrediants. You could blitz this to make a smoothe paste, this would be nice against the pickle you are about to make but i choose not to. Once you are happy, season and set aside.
  4. Right, the pickle. Chop the chillis and put in a bowl with the vinger for around 30 seconds. Drain the vinger. Add the chopped onion, chopped mint and a little sugar if you wish. Add the lemon juice and rest at room temp until ready to eat.
  5. Now for the hake. There are a whole load of ways you could cook it. You could sit it on top of the dahl and steam it, but i choose to pan fry and roast. So simple and so good. Heat a pan and add a little oil. Season the fish, and fry on the skin sides. Hake skin wont go super crispy but still tastes good. Once you bround all sides, flip onto the fresh and brown both sides. Add a tablesoon of so coconut milk and a touch of water to the pan and put in the oven and cook for about 10 minutes. It is done once the fish is firm.
  6. Now make sure you have a hot plate and put a layer of dahl on the plate, put the hake on top and top with a spoonful of the relish. Yum..

Photography copyright of KMS Photography


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