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Cape Malay Pickled Fish


We like our pickles in Britain, whether on a cocktail stick with cheese, jazzing up a butty (sandwich), part of a ploughman’s salad or accompanying a roast but this was a new dish introduced to me by a South African friend, Cape Malay Pickled Fish. Having eaten plenty Ceviche and Ika Mata and being a pickled ‘anything’ fan I had no doubt that I would like this dish as we discussed the ingredients but I wasn’t expecting the fish to be cooked before it was marinated! So if you are introducing anyone to marinaded pickled fish this is probably a good place to start if they are squeamish about trying ‘raw’ fish. The curry spices give it an interesting twist and it has the makings of a traditional pickle so for those pickled vegetable fans out there this is one its to try.

500g firm white fish, filleted
2 onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 cup white vinegar
10 black peppercorns
6 cloves
1 small cinnamon stick
2 tsp coriander seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
4 allspice berries
1 tbsp curry powder
Sea salt
Vegetable oil

Cut the fish into 2 inch size pieces.
Put a few tablespoons of vegetable oil into a large heavy based frying pan over a medium heat.
Fry fish on both side until cook through, you don’t use any flour as this will make go gluggy in the marinade.
Once cooked lay the fish into a glass casserole dish and put aside.
Add all the other ingredients Into a small pan over a medium heat and bring to a simmer. Cooking for 6 minutes until the onions are cooked but still firm.
Pour the hot marinade over the fish and place in the fridge.
Marinade for several hours or if you have the time overnight so all the flavours infuse better.

16 Comments Post a comment
  1. Beautiful and surely really scrumptious! A great combination of flavors.



    June 8, 2012
    • peasepudding #

      Thanks Rosa!

      June 10, 2012
  2. That sounds like something I’d like to try 😉

    June 8, 2012
  3. This recipe brings back such fond memories of growing up in South Africa. I am going to give your recipe a try using snapper (I have loads in my deep freeze!).

    June 8, 2012
  4. Sounds really delicious & looks gorgeous on your pic.
    It’s really a lot of different flavours, wow!

    June 8, 2012
  5. That sounds amazing. I took a huge piece of cod out of the freezer before reading this, so will give this a try with part of it!

    June 9, 2012
    • peasepudding #

      It should go well with cod, let me know how you like it.

      June 9, 2012
  6. I’m a big fan of pickles.. and I, too, would appreciate one cooked first, I think, given my inexperience with pickling anything! This looks awesome!

    June 9, 2012
  7. I love this,,,,all those wonderful flavours! And I am definitely with you on pickles 🙂

    June 9, 2012
    • peasepudding #

      I think it definitely has something to do with our upbringing, must make some pickled onions and veg soon.

      June 10, 2012
  8. Looks very tasty and delicious! If you have time, have a look at our version

    June 10, 2012
    • peasepudding #

      Thanks Marietjie, I should have known this might be a favourite of yours too! Hope to see you two at the conference this year xx

      June 10, 2012
  9. I love the spices used on this fish, this would go well with freshly cooked jasmine rice

    June 10, 2012
  10. What an interesting recipe! The spices sound wonderful! 😀

    June 10, 2012
  11. Gilli #

    There is an italan dish using flounder which is cooked then marinated which is delicious. This sounds really tasty

    June 10, 2012
    • peasepudding #

      You’ll have to share that one with us Gilli

      June 10, 2012

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