Fish Amok is the national dish of Cambodia ~ an aromatic fish curry that is steamed in banana leaf baskets, leaving the fish falling-apart-tender.
Cambodian cooking is less spicy than Vietnamese or Thai. Because of this I add more chillies than traditionally so.
Timing: 50 minutes Serves:2
250g firm white River fish (like barramundi, halibut)
2 sheets banana leaves
3 sticks lemongrass chopped
100g galangal finely shredded or grated
100g turmeric (fresh if possible)
1 red onion
2 red chillies
2 kaffir lime leaves
3 garlic cloves
250g coconut cream
2 star anise
1 teaspoon salt
Prahok (Cambodian fish paste) or fish sauce to taste about 1 tablespoon
Noni leaf if you can find it or substitute kaffir lime leaf
more Chillies finely sliced for serving
More coconut cream for serving
Red capsicum, julienned and
Kaffir lime leaves julienned for serving
Make a banana leaf basket. Hold it together with toothpicks. (There’s a YouTube on this, cunningly done with staples but, more traditionally done with toothpicks).
Chop lemongrass, turmeric, and galangal finely
Add to chopped red chilli and red onion, garlic & kaffir lime. Add peanuts and coconut cream and a teaspoon of sugar
Mix in blender until very smooth.
Chop ‘noni’ leaf and fish.
Heat pan, add oil and then kreung (the lemongrass paste)
Add Prahok (fish paste) or fish sauce
Add star anise to pan. Season with salt & add a spoonful of coconut milk. Add the fish. Stir and let simmer.
Beat egg and add to pan.
Add ‘noni’ (or kaffir lime leaf), julienned finely.
Add mixture to banana leaf bowl.
Cover with more beaten egg.
Steam for around 10 minutes or until just firm. It should be a little like a custard in firmness.
Put a tablespoon of coconut cream on top before serving and decorate with red capsicum, (lots of) chillies and kaffir lime leaves
Serve with brown or white rice.