Bastard Thai Fish Curry: Recipe

This Bastard Thai Fish Curry recipe is a bastard because while its base is Thai, it contains a few ingredients and techniques not commonly used in a Thai fish curry. I was going to make a traditional curry but when I got home from work I realised that I was missing some of the ingredients that I needed, and had some other ingredients left over from the weekend. A bit of thought and a short while later I had prepared a quick and healthy curry which tastes great and is now part of my recipe arsenal.

thai fish curry recipe

Preparation Time: 15 minutes     /     Cooking Time: 10 minutes     /     Serves 4


  • 2g coriander seeds, ground
  • 250g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2cm piece of ginger, grated
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 650g rockling (or equivalent fleshy fish), cut into 2cm x 3cm cubes
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2g turmeric
  • 2g hot paprika
  • 300g natural yoghurt
  • 25ml lemon juice
  • 40 Vietnamese mint leaves
  • 15g corn starch
  • 3g tamarind paste



  1. Mix together the hot paprika, turmeric and coriander
  2. Heat a fying pan (no oil required), add the spice mix and toast for 1 minute
  3. Remove the spices from the heat and set aside.
  4. Add the fish to a pan with a little oil and cook for 4 minutes, turning as required to ensure it is evenly cooked. Cut a piece in half to ensure that it’s cooked but be careful that you don’t overcook the fish or it will turn rubbery.
  5. Add the garlic, yoghurt, ginger, spice mix, tomatoes, turmeric and bay leaf and lemon juice to the pan.
  6. Cook for a further 5 minutes.
  7. Remove from the heat, and stir through the mint.
  8. Serve with rice, thin rice noodles or naan.


If the sauce is too watery when it comes off the heat, remove the solids from the liquid, stir 15g of corn starch into the sauce and bring it to the boil until it’s thickened up.

If you don’t have any Vietnamese mint leaves, try some coriander instead.

A lime works just as well as a lemon.

Paul founded The City Lane back in 2009 as a place to share photos of his travels around Europe with friends and family. The City Lane might have changed quite a lot since those early days but one thing that’s remained constant is Paul’s passion for food, travel and culture, and a desire to photograph and write about his experiences. Paul has a strong inquisitive nature that drives him to look beneath the surface in order to discover what really makes a city and its people tick, and what better way to do this than over a good meal or drink, with a city’s locals, at places that people who live in that city actually frequent. Paul is also a co-host of The Brunswick Beer Collective, a podcast that may or may not actually be about beer.


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