Who's That Girl
- Create. Snap. Eat.
- WHO'S THAT GIRL: A higher education obsessed foodie who is documenting her life in the kitchen. I love to cook delicious, gourmet-style foods for those I love and always welcome a challenge in the kitchen. With that challenge comes an impromptu nature. I tend to avoid following recipes to the exact, so you are not likely to find very many posted here. Being that I am a Libra and am learning to be free in the kitchen, the story always goes, "A pinch of this and a smattering of that!" Thank you for visiting -- and happy reading!
Friday, May 25, 2012
Curry Catfish Fail
I hated this dish.
Blecht! I didn't like it at all.
It had all the makings of things I didn't like: Breaded catfish, fried fish and heavy sauce.
What was I doing, you might ask?
I was experimenting.
I'd had catfish curry at one of our local Vietnamese restaurants and thought I would try and duplicate this dish at home.
It was my first time having catfish curry, ever.
Hum...now I wonder if the chef was experimenting as well. I had never heard of curry catfish on a Vietnamese menu before -- not that I am the expert on Vietnamese home and restaurant cooking around the world. I'm not.
But I went for it. And, goodness, was it good. So good!
The chef did an excellent job. The batter was not too thick. The fish had a wonderful texture. And the curry was perfectly flavored.
I didn't bother asking how it was done. I decided to go off of memory.
I started by browning coriander seeds, later cooking them slowly with some sweet onions. I also prepped ginger and shallots.
Cooking the catfish was the biggest headache. I do not like battered fish much at all and I have never tried cooking battered fish at home.
I went the easy route. I seasoned the flour and beat a couple of eggs, dipping the catfish in the eggs, then the flour.
At the same time, I was working on the curry. I included mustard, paprika and cumin along with tomato sauce and a bit of curry powder.
When the sauce was at the correct consistency, and with the catfish all battered and fried (blecht! ...yes, again), I added the fish to the sauce and cooked briefly.
It just didn't fit. It was a culinary mismatch to me.
What did I do wrong?
What did the chef at the Vietnamese restaurant do that was right? So very, very right?
I do not know.
But, goodness, I will have to get back there, grab him/her by the collar and with swiftness, beg that the recipe be released to me before the police arrive and drag me away.
Until then, I will have to be content with this failure: Battered and fried catfish curry served over a bed of rice and sprinkled with cilantro.
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