5 pieces of king mackerel (tenggiri), about 500g
½ tsp salt
150ml vegetable oil for frying the fish
3 slices dried tamarind (asam gelugur/ asam keping)
1 tbsp fish curry powder
78ml coconut milk
1 ½ tsp palm sugar or brown sugar
5 – 6 kaffir lime leaves
1 turmeric leaf, sliced
1 tsp coconut oil
For the fish marinade:
1 tbsp white vinegar
1 tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp salt
½ tsp crushed black pepper
For the spice paste:
5 gloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
10 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped
3 stalks lemongrass, roughly chopped
2 inches ginger, roughly chopped
2 inches galangal, roughly chopped
2 inches fresh turmeric (or ½ tsp turmeric powder), roughly chopped
4 green bird’s eye chilies, roughly chopped
12 -15 dried red chilies, soaked in warm water for about 15mins and drained
For the toasted coconut paste (kerisik):
125g shredded coconut
Pinch of cumin seeds
Pinch of whole black peppercorns
Marinate the fish with white vinegar, turmeric powder, salt and crushed black pepper. Rest the fish for at least 10 minutes to allow the flavors to soak into the fish.
Heat a pan on medium heat with vegetable oil and fry the fish till it is about ¾ cooked. Flip the fish halfway through cooking to ensure both sides are evely cooked.
Set the fish aside to cool and save the oil for later.
In a blender or mortar and pestle, add the garlic, shallots, lemongrass, ginger, galangal, fresh turmeric, green bird’s eye chilies, and dried red chilies.
Blend into a smooth paste with 2 tbsp water. Set aside the paste for frying later.
In a pan on medium heat, toast the shredded coconut.
When shredded coconut has lightly browned, add the cumin seeds and black peppercorns. Toast until golden brown.
Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Once cooled, blend into a coarse powder and set aside for frying later.
In a pan on medium heat, pour the oil that was used to fry the fish.
Add the blended spice paste to the pan with ½ tsp salt, fry until fragrant.
To the pan, add the dried tamarind slices, 125ml water and the fish curry powder. Mix well to combine.
Next, add the coconut milk, palm sugar, kaffir lime leaves, sliced turmeric leaf and the toasted coconut powder. Cook for another 2 minutes.
Add the fried fish to the pan and cook for 3 minutes. Give it a good mix so the fish is evenly coated with the gravy.
Drizzle with coconut oil for extra aroma.
The King Mackerel Rendang is now ready to be served!