Malabar monkfish curry

Malabar monkfish curry

  • serves 2
  • Easy

Recreate this Indo-Chinese recipe from Soho’s chic Kolkata-inspired café, Fatt Pundit. It's well worth making your own sauce for this decadent monkfish curry


Try this monkfish curry from Fatt Pundit and serve with the restaurant’s crispy okra on the side.




  • coconut oil 50-75ml
  • onion 1 medium, finely chopped
  • ginger purée 1 tbsp
  • garlic purée 1 tbsp
  • black mustard seeds ¾ tsp
  • green chillies 2, sliced
  • curry leaves 6, plus extra to serve
  • asafoetida powder ¾ tbsp
  • ground turmeric ½ tbsp
  • chilli powder ½ tbsp
  • ground coriander 1 tbsp
  • madras curry powder 2 tbsp
  • chopped tomatoes 120g from a tin
  • coconut milk 400g tin
  • tamarind paste 1 tbsp
  • fennel seeds ground to make ¾ tbsp


  • saffron 5g
  • milk 100ml
  • monkfish 250g, cut into two pieces
  • ghee or clarified butter 2 tbsp, melted and cooled
  • toasted coconut chips 50g
  • chilli oil (optional) for serving


  • Step 1

    Soak the saffron in the milk in a small cup, for 15 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl, stir in a pinch of salt, then add the fish and leave to marinate for at least 30 minutes.

  • Step 2

    Heat 1 tbsp of the coconut oil in a non-stick pan and fry the onion, ginger and garlic purée, mustard seeds, green chillies and curry leaves until golden brown.

  • Step 3

    Combine all the powdered spices in a bowl with little water, then add to the pan and cook until the oil separates from the masala – it’s a good indication that the spices have roasted properly. Add the tomatoes, coconut milk, tamarind and 100-150ml water, and cook over a medium heat, stirring, for 10 minutes, then simmer for another 15-20 minutes.

  • Step 4

    Heat the oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Put an ovenproof frying pan over a medium-high heat for 2 minutes, then add the ghee, followed by the monkfish. Fry for 2 minutes to just brown the fish, then carefully turn over and fry for a further 2 minutes. Transfer the pan to the oven and roast the monkfish for 6-8 minutes, depending on how thick the fillets are – when it is ready, the fish will be opaque and flake easily when pressed with a fork. If you don’t have an ovenproof frying pan, simply fry the fish in a frying pan, then transfer to a lightly oiled roasting tin or baking tray and roast in the oven.

  • Step 5

    Once the sauce is ready, tip into two serving bowls and place the roasted monkfish pieces on top. Garnish with toasted coconut chips, curry leaves and chilli oil, if you like.

*This recipe is gluten free according to industry standards

Head here for more monkfish recipes

Roast monkfish, spiced aubergine, basil and ginger dressing. Photo credit Cedar film

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 1131
  • Fat 92.9g
  • Saturates 71.5g
  • Carbs 38.6g
  • Sugars 19g
  • Fibre 7.3g
  • Protein 31.4g
  • Salt 1.2g