Brick Lane Cookbook
For a jazzed-up fish Friday try this easy dish inspired by Gram Bangla and Banglar Mukh, a couple of the smaller Bangladeshi eateries on Brick Lane which specialise in home-style cooking. These restaurants tend to have only a few meat or chicken dishes, but when it comes to fish you’re spoilt for choice with a vast selection of dishes where it is fried, curried and/or made into dumplings. This great recipe is crispy and fragrant and so good with simple steamed rice. Best of all, it’s on your plate in about ten minutes.
Pat dry your tilapia fillets and place on a large, flat dish. Mix the salt with the turmeric, cumin and chilli powder in a small bowl and rub about a teaspoon into each fillet. Make sure to cover both sides evenly.
Heat about 150ml vegetable oil in a deep sided frying pan over medium heat-high. When the oil is very hot, carefully slide two tilapia fillets into the pan at a time and fry for five minutes on each side, until golden brown. Remove to a warm dish and repeat with the remaining two fillets.
Put the remaining 100ml of vegetable oil in another pan over high heat and add the sliced onions. Fry them for six to eight minutes, or until golden and slightly crispy. Stir through the chopped coriander and green chillies a minute before taking off the heat. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the onions to a dish.
Serve the fish with steamed rice, topped with some of the fried onions
Cook’s tip – it is important to heat up the oil properly before you put the fish in so it immediately begins to crisp up. Don’t be tempted to turn the fish over too early and when you do, make sure to use a large, flat spatula.