Fish Curry ( Burmese Style ) Recipe with cod fillet in rich tomato curry sauce. Learn how to make it at home with our simple instructions.
Fish curry from Asian countries such as India, Thai, and Sri Lanka are quite popular across the world and I do love the savory taste of those dishes.
If you love trying new tastes, here is my Burmese fish and tomato curry which looks just like Sri Lanka or Brazilian fish curry - red color curry with tomatoes. Yet the ingredients are a bit different!
How fish curry is mostly cooked everywhere?
Depending on the region, the use of aromatics could slightly differ but it always includes lots of shallots or onions to thicken the curry. Mostly, coconut milk is added to enhance the flavor and make the curry creamier.
The signature of Indian fish curry is masala while Thai curries are cooked with Thai yellow or red curry paste. In almost every region, fish curry is cooked either savory or spicy with fresh chilies, paprika and chili powder added.
Traditional Burmese Fish Curry Recipe
Burmese people love to eat fish and cook it in a variety of ways such as fried fish curry, steamed fish, and fish broth soup. Fish in tomato curry is one of the most popular Burmese dishes.
Traditional Burmese fish curry is made of bone-on fish, first season the fish with turmeric, chilli, garlic, and fish sauce before cooking in the sauce. Then cook in the curry sauce made of shallots, garlic, tomatoes, and seasoned with turmeric, chilli, salt, fish sauce. Corriander and chopped green chillies bring more flavour to the dish.
There are few more classic Burmese herbs, spices, and ingredients that you can add to the Burmese fish curry. Those are lemongrass, Burmese basil, coriander root, fish paste, or shrimp paste.
As this is an easy recipe, I tried to use fewer ingredients as possible. Here are ingredients explained:
Fish: In Burma, Burmese mrigal carp would be used for this dish but any white meaty fish like cod and seabass would go well too. I’m using cod fish fillet in this recipe and it tastes incredible!
Curry: Vine tomato and shallots are essential for this curry and aromatics are quite simple. It's all your pantry-friendly ingredients like turmeric powder, chilli powder, fish sauce, garlic cloves, red/green chillies, and a handful of coriander.
Vine Tomato: I love to use vine-ripened tomato because it is fresher, sweeter, and tastes better. You can surely use any tomato if you can't find vine tomato.
Fish Sauce: It is a translucent liquid condiment made from fermented fish, squid, or shrimp. Tastes salty, fishy, and sweet at the same time and gives an umami flavour to the dish.
Widely used in Southeast Asia countries like Burma, Thailand, Vietnam, Lao, etc. Burmese use fish sauce in their seasonings, sauces, soups, curries, and salads. Fish sauce always makes the dish tastes better!
Highly recommend adding the fish sauce to this recipe. You can find it in most Oriental Asian grocery stores or supermarket Asian aisles. If you have an allergy or do not like the fish sauce flavour, you can simply swap it with soy sauce or salt to taste.
How to serve this dish
Since the curry is rich in flavor, it is best to have it with a warm bowl of rice. Garnish with chopped fresh coriander and green chillies. Make sure you cooked enough rice beforehand. This curry will surely boost up your appetite and make you want to eat more!
How To Make It
Cut fish into large cubes. Add salt and tumeric and rub well on the fish cubes.
Grate the garlic, finely chop the shallot and tomatoes.
Cut the chillies in half, roughly chop the corriender leaves.
Heat the pan, add oil then add shallots and garlic and saute till the colour changed into light brown.
Add the tomatoes and stir for few seconds, sprinkle salt and saute till the oil come to the surface. I recommend to use vine tomato because of its sweetness and its quicker to cook. Pour half cup of water, mix the paste well bring it to simmer and add the marinated fish.
Close the lid and simmer for 2-3 mins. Gently stir and turn side to prevent fish from breaking. Add coriander chopped, chillies and fish sauce. Add some more water if the curry paste is too thick. Close lid and continue simmer for 2-3 mins.
Once cooked remove from pan immediately and put in serving plate. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and sliced chillies. Serve with steamed rice! Enjoy!
Watch How To Make Burmese Fish Curry Recipe Video
Marinate for fish
- ½ Tsp Salt
- ½ Tsp Tumeric
- 250 g Cod Fish / Barramundi Fish / White Fish Cut large cubes
- 2-3 Cloves Garlic Finely grated, paste
- 1-2 Shallot onion Or brown onion, finely chopped
- 2 Vine Tomato Finely chopped
- 4-5 Red/green chilli Cut thin slices
- Handful coriander Roughly chopped
- 1½ tsp Chilli powder Or paprika powder
- ½ tsp Tumeric powder
- 1½ tsp Fish sauce Or add sal to taste
- 2-3 Tbsp Oil Groundnut, vegetable, canola, or neutral flavour oil.
- ½ Tsp Salt Or salt to your taste
- ½ Cup Warm Water Add more water if needed
- Cut fish into large cubes. Add salt and turmeric and rub well on the fish cubes. Set it aside and marinate for at least 10 minutes.
- Grate the garlic, finely chop the shallot and tomatoes.
- Cut the chillies, and roughly chop the coriander leaves.
- Heat the pan, add oil then add shallots and garlic and saute until the colour changed into light brown.
- Add the tomatoes and stir for a few seconds, sprinkle salt and saute until the tomatoes are soft and oil come to the surface.
- Pour warm water, mix the paste well bring it to simmer, and add the marinated fish.
- Close the lid and cook with low-medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Gently stir and turn side to prevent fish from breaking.
- Add coriander chopped, chillies and fish sauce. Add some more water if the curry paste is too thick.
- Close lid and continue cook for another 2-3 mins or until the fish is cooked through.
- Once the fish is cooked, remove from pan and transfer to serving plate.
- Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and sliced chillies.
- Serve with steamed rice! Enjoy!
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