I first ate this dish in Papua New Guinea, where the sharpness of lime is used to pickle the fish, in a way not dissimilar to the ceviche of South America. Here, it also has the inherent sweetness of coconut.
- 500 g goldband snapper fillet, skin removed
- 40 ml freshly squeezed lime juice (2-3 limes)
- 1-2 tsp fish sauce
- 100 ml coconut cream, or to taste
- 1 handful coriander leaves
- 3-4 thinly sliced small red chillies
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Marinating time 1½ hours
Ensure the snapper is free of scales and bones. Slice thinly across the fillet; you’re looking at slices no more then 5mm thick ideally. Place these in a non-reactive (glass or ceramic) tray or bowl.
Sprinkle half the lime juice and all the fish sauce all over and allow the fish to sit for an hour, stirring occasionally. It will go a kind of whitish colour on the outside.
Mix the rest of the lime with the coconut milk, then drizzle over the fish.
Allow to sit in this mixture for another 30 minutes or so and serve with fresh coriander and sliced chillies.
This recipe is from Matthew Evans's documentary What's the Catch, which premieres on Thursday 30 October 2014 at 8.30pm AEST on SBS ONE.