South African Curried Pickled Fish Recipe

  • 8 lbs fish, firm-fleshed, weighed after filleting and frying
  • 8 onions, very large, sliced thinly
  • Cooking Oil
  • 4 tbsp. curry powder
  • 8 tbsp. cups vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2-3 hot peppers, fresh, sliced open
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. black peppercorns
  • 4-6 tbsp. apricot preserves

  1. First fry the fish in a large pan or skillet in the oil or lard, without seasoning.
  2. Remove fish to cool, but leave the pan on the stove.
  3. Fry the onions, stirring, in the same pan, without browning them.
  4. Add more oil/butter/lard if necessary.
  5. Remove onions with a slotted spoon to a bowl to cool. Add all the remaining ingredients.
  6. Decide how hot you'd like it: those hot peppers, or chillies, went into the mixture seeds and all!
  7. Leave them out if you like.
  8. Mix well and boil furiously for 6 minutes.
  9. Allow the mixture to cool.
  10. Using a deep dish OR clean canning jars, put some of the liquid in the bottom.
  11. Place a layer of fried fish on the sauce, and cover with more sauce and a layer of onions.
  12. Repeat layers until used up, trying to finish with a layer of onions.
  13. Cover and leave in fridge for 2 - 3 days before tasting.
  14. If in jars, close the jars tightly.
  15. Believe me -- in days of old this fish was not refrigerated. It can be kept for a long, long time, and therefore travels well!
  16. Some cooks added lemon or orange leaves to the final layering for a delicate extra flavour.

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