I think my favorite part about this recipe is the crunchy topping. Don’t skip it! I put it on everything. Sometimes I sub cashews for pumpkin seeds which is also good.
So…I’ve never made curry paste before. I usually buy it. I have no idea if I did it right but it looked and tasted like curry paste and when it comes to paleo cooking, isn’t that the result we usually aim for? In that case – success!
I’m visiting a friend right now and packed this to bring with me. Because of my gluten intolerance and horrible reactions to cross contamination of gluten particles, I have learned to bring my own food with me just about everywhere. So of course the only two meats I bring are fish. This tilapia and tuna salad (made with my yellow mayo!). My friend’s house is going to smell like a fish by the time I leave. Haha oops!
- 2 dried chilies of your choice, I used hatch chilies
- ½ Tbsp lime juice
- 1 stalk lemon grass
- ¼ tsp coriander
- ¼ tsp ginger
- ⅛ tsp cinnamon
- 3 cloves garlic
- ⅓ C pumpkin puree
- Curry paste (above)
- 1 C full fat coconut milk
- 2 kaffir lime leaves
- salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste
- 4 tilapia fillets
- 1 Tbsp lime juice
- 1 Tbsp ghee or coconut oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ C pumpkin seeds
- ½ Tbsp ghee or coconut oil
- sprinkle of salt
- Preheat oven to 425ºF.
- First we need to start on the curry paste. Remove chili stems and slice lengthwise to remove seeds. Gently heat chilies on both sides in a small skillet over medium heat. The chilies should become fragrant and soften slightly. Be careful not to burn them. Remove chilies from heat and soak in a bowl of hot water for 15 minutes.
- Thinly slice the lemongrass stalk. This is easiest to do with kitchen shears. When the chilies are done soaking, remove them from the water and place in a food processor along with the lemongrass, lime juice, coriander, ginger, cinnamon, garlic, and pumpkin puree. Puree until you get a smooth paste.
- To complete the sauce, heat the curry paste in a small saucepan over medium heat until fragrant. Whisk in the coconut milk. Taste the sauce and add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste. You may want more or less cayenne depending on your spice preference and the type of chilies you used. Add the kaffir lime leaves then turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes, whisking occasionally. Remove and discard lime leaves.
- While the sauce is simmering, start on the fish. Place fillets in a glass baking dish. Top with lime juice, salt, pepper, and ghee or coconut oil. The fish should take about 10-12 minutes to bake depending on the thickness of the fillets.
- Making the topping is super simple. Heat the ghee/coconut oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Stir in the pumpkin seeds and sprinkle with salt. Continue to heat until the seeds are toasted.
- To assemble, top the fish fillets with the sauce and then the toasted pumpkin seeds.