Made by marinating white fish in lime juice and coconut milk, the lime juice cures the fish so that there’s no need to cook (hence no nasty fish smells in your kitchen).
Best enjoyed in summer – when limes are tasty, abundant and cheap – limes have many health promoting properties. They are rich in vitamin C and are excellent for digestive function, thanks to their natural acidity which stimulates the secretion of digestive enzymes. Limes are high in flavonoids, best known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties – the latter making them good for arthritis sufferers. Limes are also said to be good for the skin (especially the oil in the skin, which is present in this dish thanks to the zest) and help regulate sugar absorption in diabetic patients.
Coconuts are a superfood of the moment and although the milk can be a little on the heavy side, you don’t actually consume a great deal in this recipe as you discard much of the marinate.
The cucumber is light and alkalising, the chilli is also good for digestion and the coriander/cilantro contains helps the body reduce swelling and inflammation.
Make sure you choose a good quality firm white fish for this dish – if unsure check with your fish monger.
- Approx 500g / 18oz (2 -3 fillets) of firm white fish
- 4 eschalots (Australia) /scallions (US) /spring onions (UK)
- half a bunch of fresh coriander/cilantro leaves
- quarter bunch fresh mint leaves
- Juice and zest of 2 limes
- 150ml/ 5fl oz coconut milk
- 1 long red chilli (deseeded)
- half a lebanese cucumber
- Salt and pepper to serve
- Extra lime wedges to serve
- Finely zest the lime using a grater, then juice the limes and combine with the coconut milk
- Remove the blood line from the fish and cut into small cubes just under 1cm each side or about a third of an inch
- Place the fish into a glass or non-reactive bowl, cover with the lime and coconut milk marinade and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. This process will cure the fish. I like to leave mine for an hour but ideally you should not leave for longer than 2 hours.
- Meanwhile, peel the cucumber, remove the inner part and finely chop the flesh then place in a sieve over a bowl and lightly salt – this will leach the excess water from the cucumber
- Remove the seeds from the chili (i like to use gloves for this so as not to burn my hands), wash and finely chop
- Finely chop the white and light green part of the spring onion
- Once the fish has cured, remove from the fridge and drain ensuring that you keep the coconut and lime marinade
- Mix the chilli, cucumber, spring onion, coriander and mint leaves through the fish and top with a little of the coconut and lime marinade (although not too much, you don’t want it to be soupy)
- Serve with fresh lime wedges
Serves 4 as a starter or 2 as a main dish.