Friday Fish Curry

Friday Fish Curry Loula Natural

Friday Fish Curry

My dad loves his fish on Friday. We love fish once a week and so friday is as good a day as any! I try to mix up what we have and I absolutely love all kinds of asian food so this hybrid joins all the flavours I love the most.

I serve ours with parsnip rice and green veg like stir fried kale, bok choi or broccoli. You can adjust the heat or leave out the chillies all together if you are not keen on spice. Our kids like a little spice so I try to minimise it so they can eat with us.

Friday Fish Curry
This Thai/Indian hybrid satisfies my taste buds. The thai lemongrass and ginger with the more indian mustard seeds and turmeric makes this curry light, fresh and with a comforting heat.
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 tsp ground coriander seed
  2. 1/2 tsp ground cumin seed
  3. 1/2 tsp mustard seed
  4. 1tsp dried turmeric or thumb nail size fresh turmeric root
  5. thumbnail size fresh ginger
  6. thumbnail size fresh galangal
  7. thumbnail size fresh lemongrass
  8. 3 cloves garlic
  9. 3 curry leaves
  10. salt/pepper
  11. 1 tbsp coconut oil
  12. Juice of one lime
  13. 2 tbsp coconut sugar
  14. can coconut milk
  15. 2 small shallots
  16. 1 small red chillies
  17. 800g fish (I use Ling Fillet but any firm fish or salmon would be nice)
  18. 3 parsnips for the rice
Instructions
  1. In a food processor add the shallots, red chillies, salt, pepper, 3 curry leaves, garlic, lemongrass, ginger, galangal, turmeric, mustard seed, coriander seed and cumin seed. blend until almost paste like- add the coconut oil.
  2. Cube the fish
  3. Add the fish and paste to a bowl and mix well. Cover and leave to marinate for an hour (overnight is best)
  4. Add coconut oil to a hot pan and add marinaded fish and fry until spices are fragrant.
  5. Add coconut milk sugar to taste. Allow to simmer.
  6. Add some vegetables (this time I added aubergine and baby corn but anything would work well)
  7. Allow to simmer until vegetables are cooked
  8. Serve with rice and green vegetables. I use parsnip rice.
Notes
  1. I have also used beef and chicken with the exact same method.
  2. This recipe works beautifully in the slow cooker too. Just add it to the slow cooker with the vegetables and cook on low for 4 hours.
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I also use exactly the same recipe with chicken and beef too. With the beef I use brisket as it is lovely slow cooked (see my beef bourguignon recipe). Add the marinaded beef to the slow cooker and when there is 2 hours left on the cooking time- add the coconut milk and extra vegetables.

Friday Fish Curry Loula Natural pin

Coconut Milk

Coconut Milk Loula Natural fb I love coconut. I love making coconut yoghurt, milk and butter from the meat and drinking the water and making coconut water kefir. The recipes couldn’t be simpler.

The results from making them fresh and from home are so beyond what you can buy in cartons, cans and jars! Mostly however because the natural bacteria are still present in the fresh meat and water and this greatly enhances the health giving properties. I use Young Thai coconuts, they are my favourite tasting ones. They also have a good amount of soft meat and water to make a delicious coconut milk that does not need straining. Have a look at my post to see how to easily open them

There are also several methods of making coconut milk from dried coconut too. In the tropics we have these in abundance of fresh coconuts in the supermarkets and after using the water and meat they are a bargain. Now I just need some ideas on how to use the husks- I hate waste and live on the 27th floor! (update- we now live in a house and I am planning to use them as planters for some seedlings.)

The easiest way to make coconut milk is to use the contents of one coconut (meat and water- topping up with filtered water if necessary) and blend- however if you want to make more than one glass then follow this recipe.

Fresh Coconut Milk
A delicious vibrant milk which is far superior to cows milk in taste, nutrient content and nutrient availability.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 Cups of Coconut water (about the contents of 1 coconut)
  2. 1 1/2 Cups of filtered Water
  3. 1 cup of coconut meat (normally 2-3 coconuts worth)
Instructions
  1. Add all the ingredients into a high speed blender
  2. Blend until thick and creamy.
  3. No need to strain
Notes
  1. This will keep in the fridge for at least a week but it is normally used up way before then.
  2. I have also made Coconut milk Kefir from this also. Just add the milk grains and leave with a muslin cover for 12-24 hours- to taste!
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Coconut Milk Loula Natural pin

5 Reasons to Make Kefir

 

Grains in the picture are water grains I ferment with Coconut Sugar and Filtered Water  or Coconut Water (hence the colour!)
Grains in the picture are water grains I ferment with Coconut Sugar and Filtered Water or Coconut Water (hence the colour!)

 

Fermentation is the “transformation of food by various bacteria, fungi and enzymes they produce” (The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Katz- awesome book. The transformation is enormous.

Fermenting is a natural phenomenon. Very little is actually understood about the make-up of the starters and how they grow, transform and multiply. Some do it spontaneously and some are seemingly indestructible. The trans-formative power of fermentation can produce alcohol, preserve our foods and make them more digestible, less toxic and more delicious.

1. Vibrant is how I tend to describe fermented foods especially Kefir. We would not exist without our bacterial partners. Our digestive systems need them and this system is vital for the procurement, absorption and assimilation of nutrients used to power every other body system. Our immune system depends on it and we could not use or store energy without them. The product is amazing! When using a UHT milk you will get a superior product with more nutrients ready to be absorbed. If you go up the scale and ferment a Raw Milk (sadly impossible for us here in HK) you are getting a true super food. The same goes for your water Kefir- if you use white refined sugar you are getting the bacterial benefit, if you are using a coconut sugar or maple syrup there will be so many more nutrients available within the water

2. Kefir is a natural pro-biotic. Kefir grains, whether water or milk, are essentially cultured beneficial bacteria. It is what they then go onto culture that makes them one or the other (milk or water). However with time and patience they can be used to culture both. If someone gives you ‘milk kefir’ grains you may be able to use them to culture any milk (cows, goats, sheep’s, soy, rice, any nut/seed or coconut). ‘Water Kefir’ grains may be used to culture Water (sugared water, juice or coconut water). This means that grains can produce different results based on where they are from and what they have been used and no two batches will be the same. They feed on the lactose in the milk and the sugar in the water (coconut or juice). 

3. They are cheaper to use then bottled probiotics. They are also alive and not freeze dried like in the capsules so are ready to inhabit and balance the bacteria in your digestive system. Safe for everyone Kefir can be taken while pregnant and is great for babies (not the milk kefir before the age of one) Capsules will help promote good bacteria but will not take up residence like Kefir does (source) Also Kefir has 35 strains of alive bacteria working together in symbiosis. How many strains are listed on the back of your probiotic capsules?

4. Kefir is so easy to make. Liquid (containing sugar), warm environment (room temperature) and grains. Leave for between 12-24 hours strain and go. Other forms of fermenting can take longer and be a bit more tempermental! The Grains are virtually indestructible and can be stored easily in the fridgeThe Kefir community is inclusive and open to all so you should be able to find grains from someone in your area. (The grains are meant to be free but some people may charge postage or a nominal fee- my grains are free to come and collect!) 

5. What to use it in. I add it to a smoothie every morning. However you can also make yoghurt from it, use it as a sourdough starter, pancakes, ice cream, chiaporridge, cereal, raw cookies, green drinks;the possibilities are endless. Use them on your skin and is great for Eczema (in the bath, grains as a face/body mask, in a spray bottle for after swimming and my favourite way is as an alternative to shampoo; the water and coconut water are amazing on hair and the milk kefir is great as a hair mask- try mixing it with a little coconut oil) Come and find my Fermenting Inspiration board on my Pinterest where I also share other great ideas). This post is just addressing the first ferment– with an additional second ferment the possibilities for goodness, nutritional content and taste are virtually endless!

 

If you are in Hong Kong come on one of my Fermenting Workshops to taste and learn Kefir, Kombucha and Coconut Yoghurt within a community! See my events board on my facebook page or subscribe to my newsletter to be kept up to date with all recipes and tips! Learn more buy buying my book;

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HKD$150 (Approx USD $19 GBP £12 AUS $20)

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5 Reasons to Include Raw Food into Your Day:

Raw food

To clarify by Raw I include all fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds in their normal unprocessed state. The food is never heated above 115 degrees F or 48C. I do not support a full Raw Food Diet no more than I would support any diet that is restrictive and unbalanced. I endorse a 80/20% moderation in all things! Personally I enjoy at least 1 (if not more) completely Raw food meal a week. However I also eat cooked food and am not a vegan or vegetarian!

 

  1. Supposedly eating Raw retains all of the vital components of the foods (vitamins, minerals, enzymes, essential fatty acids, plant proteins, fibre, water, phyto-nutrients, antioxidants and probiotics) in their natural form. It also therefore remains free of processed sugars (most of which are boiled) sweeteners, flavourings, preservatives, gluten, dairy and unfermented soy. The diet can be very nut heavy but should suit those without allergies andseeds can be substituted easily. B vitamins, essential fatty acids, vitamin c and enzymes with in food are susceptible to heat damage, these are retained in a Raw state
  2. Raw food is reported to be gentler on the digestive system as the body is more adapt at assimilating unadulterated foods (However people with a weak digestive system and without the necessary means to digest and absorb food there may sometimes be a reaction to raw foods).The fibre contentcan also help balance blood sugar levels and bulk stool thus potentially helping any constipation. It is a simple and easy to integrate into your life and lifestyle- as easy as having a salad of raw vegetables with or as your meal. It is also kinder to the planet!
  3. The foods are fresh so generally you will be eating seasonally and organic is preferred but not essential. You may also feel a boost in your immune system and see a decrease in chronic inflammation.
  4. There is a vibrancy to raw foods. There may sometimes be an initial adjustment period for the body but after this with an abundance of nutrients and no more empty calories you should feel energy levels improve. Eating Raw foods can help you feel lighter (don’t really get that full, bloated feeling after a meal).  . It will also help address the acid/alkaline balance in the body.
  5. It can also make you more organised as if something has to be soaked or prepped in advance it gives you a little more control over the days/weeks meal plans.
Open a coconut
Open a coconut
Coconut
Raw Coconut Yoghurt and Coconut Milk
Raw Chocolate
Raw Chocolate.
Mango Salsa
Mango Salsa
Raw Mango Jam
Raw Mango Jam
Sprouted Lentil Slaw and Sprouted Lentil Hummus
Sprouted Lentil Salad and Sprouted Lentil Hummus
Raw Coffee and Almond Milk
Twix
Twix
Raw balls of energy
Raw balls of energy

 

Lemonade Cordial
Lemonade Cordial
Raw Green drinks
Raw Green drinks

 

Rocky Road Coconut Ice-cream

I will never go back to dairy ice cream- coconut ice-cream all the way.

You may have noticed a trend with my recipes! Chocolate. Combine that with coconut ice-cream and I am very happy! I love Chocolate- there’s nothing wrong with it. In the right form and the right amount it’s really good for you- a very good anti- oxidant. Full of healthy fats (when cocoa butter/coconut oil is used), magnesium, vitamins and minerals

I have raw organic cacao powder and I use it in my baking and for hot chocolate and my  2 kids like it way better than the sickly sweet, poor quality, addictive garbage that is generally billed for kids. “That’s not chocolate” she says about the mass produced stuff and reaches for the 85% I always have in the fridge! Guess what, she’s happy with one square.

Anyway, I love ice cream- it doesn’t love me- until now. My husband is a great cook and he too loves his sweet stuff although he has a lot more will power than me- not difficult. He also is not great with dairy and the only stuff we have is kefir and cheese (although mainly goats and Sheeps cheese and only occasionally). So dairy free coconut ice cream has always been something we have tried. Most products out there are either soy (something else we avoid unless it’s fermented) or very sweet and the chocolate flavour is usually lacking. We have developed our own little favourite flavour from checking out some blogs (see below) and have already started to brainstorm other flavours.

Here’s Niall’s winning recipe-

700mls coconut milk (organic preferably)
1 mashed banana
100ml Coconut nectar
100ml Maple syrup
3 tbs Cacao powder (I may have added 1 or 2 more to make it really chocolaty!)

Whisked in the kenwood (without banana). Stirred in banana at end. Then either use an ice cream machine or put in container and in the freezer- use a hand blender to break up the ice crystals at intervals when frozen. Yum yum!!! Seriously like it better than dairy chocolate.

Here is our Rocky Road version;

1 ½ cups of Coconut yoghurt or 1 cup coconut meat

1 cup  Fresh coconut milk (you could also use any nut,oat or dairy milk)

1 Banana (mashed) Optional

1tbs Raw Cacao powder

Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt

3 drops Vanilla essence

1tbs Honey or Maple syrup (optional)

Rocky bits (marshmallows, chopped nuts, chocolate chips, dried fruit, soaked seeds, toasted coconut…)

Just made it again and added a tablespoon of peanut butter yum yum!

The third adjustment comes from Miranda, I was struggling because it keeps freezing really solid- she suggested a little salt. Have tried it and it has made a difference. It also definitely brings out the taste of the chocolate- just add it slowly and taste along the way- the first time I did it I added too much salt! Thanks Miranda x

Here is a winning chocolate syrup recipe too from A Happy Health Nut- using honey to sweeten, yum!

 

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