“Cricket super-fan and actor Stephen Mangan’s love of the game has seen him journey to far-flung corners of the Indian Ocean, so I’ve cooked up a traditional Sri Lankan dish to remind him of his travels. It’s a deliciously dry curry, with all the flavour coming from the paste. I’m serving it with an easy yet super-tasty yellow rice and a gorgeously fresh coconut sambal – give it a go! ”
- 35 g goraka , or 2 tablespoons tamarind paste
- 1 clove of garlic
- 2 cm piece of ginger
- ½ a pandan leaf
- 1 large pinch of ground cinnamon
- ½ a teaspoon ground black pepper
- 20 fresh curry leaves
- 300 g yellowfin tuna , from sustainable sources
- 2 banana leaves
- dried red chilli flakes , optional
- 2 ripe tomatoes
- 1 fresh green chilli
- ½ a fresh coconut
- 2 limes
- ½ an onion
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 small knob of unsalted butter
- 2 pandan leaves
- 10 curry leaves
- 1 small pinch of ground turmeric
- 1 builder’s mug basmati rice , (150g)
- Boil the goraka in a pan of boiling water for about 20 minutes, or until softened.
- Peel and roughly chop the garlic and ginger, and roughly chop the pandan.
- Place the softened goraka (or tamarind paste), garlic, ginger and pandan in a pestle and mortar, along with the cinnamon, black pepper, curry leaves and a good pinch of salt. Give it a good bash until everything has broken down.
- Add 3 tablespoons of boiling water and muddle to make a smooth paste.
- Cut the tuna into 6 even chunks, rub all over with the paste, then leave to marinate for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, for the rice, peel and finely chop the onion and garlic, then place in a shallow pan on a medium heat with the butter. Roughly chop the pandan and add to the pan. Tear in the curry leaves, then give everything a good stir and cook for 8 minutes or until softened, but not coloured.
- Stir in the turmeric, add the rice and cook for a few minutes more.
- Pour in 2 mugfuls (300ml) of boiling water, season with a good pinch of sea salt, then pop the lid and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until all the water is absorbed. Turn off the heat and leave it to steam for a further 10 minutes.
- Line a lidded clay pot or a small cast iron pan with a piece of banana leaf. Pop the fish in the bottom in a single layer, then cover with another piece of banana leaf, and the lid. Place the pan on the hob over a low heat and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until just cooked through.
- To make the sambal, deseed and finely chop the tomatoes, and trim and finely slice the chilli (deseed if you like). Scrape out the coconut with a fork (about 100g) and combine in a bowl with the tomato and chilli. Finely zest over the limes, then squeeze in the juice and season to taste.
- Line 2 plates with banana leaves and arrange a little bit of everything on each. Garnish with extra shaved coconut and chilli flakes, if you like.
To make your banana leaf a little more malleable, carefully heat it over a gas hob to release the natural oils. Easy!
Source: Jamie Oliver