Jungle curry of coral trout and flat-leaf coriander

Jungle curry of coral trout and flat-leaf coriander

New Thai Food
Jeremy Simons

This curry is also delicious made with minced duck or rabbit.


Quantity Ingredient
1 x 250g coral trout fillet, skinned
1 garlic clove, peeled
2 green bird’s eye chillies
60ml Rendered pork fat
or 60ml canola oil
1 tablespoon lesser galangal, chopped
2 tablespoons Jungle curry paste
4 kaffir lime leaves
10 pea eggplant
1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
1/2 teaspoon caster sugar
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
300ml Chicken stock
or 300ml fish stock
2 apple eggplant, finely sliced
2 long green chillies, seeded and cut into 2.5 cm lengths
2 snake beans, cut into 2.5 cm lengths
3 baby corn, halved lengthways
10g holy basil leaves
100ml canola oil, for deep frying
15g flat-leaf coriander leaves, finely shredded, to garnish
2 tablespoons Crisp-fried garlic or red Asian shallots, (use shallots variation), to garnish


  1. With a very sharp knife, roughly chop or mince the trout fillet. Set aside.
  2. Pound the garlic and bird’s eye chillies in a mortar and pestle until a uniform paste.
  3. Heat the pork fat or oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over a high heat. Add the garlic and chilli paste and lesser galangal and fry, stirring, until light brown with a nutty smell, for about 2 minutes. Add the jungle curry paste and fry, stirring continuously, until the paste is fragrant and it releases the oil – this takes about 6 minutes. (As the moisture in the curry paste evaporates, the oil is released, which indicates that the paste is cooked out.)
  4. Add the lime leaves and pea eggplant and cook for 3–4 minutes. Stir in the fish sauce, sugar and oyster sauce to season. Add the chicken stock and simmer for 1–2 minutes, then add the apple eggplant and long chillies and simmer for 3–4 minutes. Taste for seasoning – it should be hot and salty at this point, with the sugar just balancing the saltiness.
  5. Add the snake beans, baby corn and trout – when you add the fish, stir so that it doesn’t clump together. Simmer for 1 minute, adjust seasoning if necessary, then stir in half the basil. Remove from the heat and set aside to let the flavours develop.
  6. Heat the oil in a small saucepan over a medium–high heat to 160°C, or until a cube of bread dropped into the oil turns brown in 25–30 seconds. Drop in the remaining basil leaves – they will sizzle for 10–15 seconds. As soon as they stop sizzling, remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.
  7. Spoon the curry onto a serving plate. Garnish with the flat-leaf coriander and deep-fried basil leaves, and serve.
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