Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Cod Baked in a Yogurt Sauce

It has taken me several weeks to get off high center about I Heart Cooking Clubs' selection for chef and cookbook author being highlighted for the next 6 months.  Quite frankly I am not a big fan of Indian cuisine.  Chalk that up to eating a lot of really bad Indian food in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.  Some has been disgusting and other, though it may taste OK, has been extremely visually unappealing. 

But....if I really want to learn something about Indian cooking Madhur Jaffrey is the one person I would want to learn from; like gravitating to Marcella Hazan for Italian, Rick Bayless for Mexican or Julia Child for French.

So, off the couch I come to cook outside my normal realm of comfort.  This week's theme is yogurt and I selected a fish dish baked in a yogurt sauce; a recipe from Indian Cooking.

Everything was easily combined in a baking dish, covered and baked.

sliced onions

fish - I used cod instead of the suggested haddock.  Halibut was another suggestion that would work here.

Topped off with a yogurt sauce flavored with ginger, cumin and coriander.  The sauce was a little bland but only due to the fact that I left out the cayenne and garam masala (which is a blend of cardamom seeds, cinnamon stick, cumin seeds, cloves, peppercorns and nutmeg).

The fish turned out delightfully light and healthy.  We served it with brown rice and sliced tomatoes.  The recipe halved well and surprised me as being the first Indian food that I actually liked.  Lovey was too!  But I didn't tell him what I was making him until he ate it.
Let's go see what they have for us to do next week (now that I have my feet wet).

Cod Baked in a Yogurt Sauce or Dahi wali macchi
Adapted from Madhur Jaffrey's Indian Cooking (as Haddock Baked in a Yogurt Sauce)
Serves 4 to 6

2 medium onion, peeled
2 pounds (900 g) 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick fresh cod fillets (or haddock or halibut)
2 cups (450 ml) plain yogurt
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
1-1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
2 tsp ground cumin
2 Tbsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp garam masala
1/2  to 3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp peeled, finely grated fresh ginger
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
3 Tbsp unsalted cold butter, cut into pieces

Mise en place:
  • rinse and dry fish fillets; cut the fillets into 3 inch (7.5 cm) pieces and set aside to dry
  • slice onions 1/8 inch (3 mm) thick slices and line a large baking dish with them.
  • place the dried, cut fillets onto the onions in a single layer
  • pour yogurt into small mixing bowl
  • squeeze lemon juice and grate the ginger and add to yogurt
  • measure out the spices and add to yogurt
  • measure vegetable oil and add to yogurt mixture
  • cut cold butter in small pieces and hold in the refrigerator until ready to use
Preheat the oven to 350°F /190°C
With a whisk mix the yogurt mixture and pour over the fish, making sure some of the sauce goes under the pieces of fish.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake in the upper third of the oven for 30 minutes or until the fish is just done.

Remove fish to a plate and keep covered in warm oven.  Meanwhile, pour all of the liquids from the baking dish into a small saucepan.  It will seem very thin and separated.  Bring the sauce to a boil and boil rapidly until there is about 1-1/2 cups (350 ml) of the sauce left, about 5 minutes  Take the saucepan off the heat.  Put in the cold butter and beat in with a fork or small whisk.  As soon as it has melted, pour the sauce over the fish and serve.

NOTE:  you may also serve the dish cold, after it has been refrigerated overnight, with a green salad.

I'm sharing this post at IHCC - go on over and see if there's anything you like


  1. I'm glad that the fish works for you, even though without the garam masala and cayenne! I love cod, but they are extremely expensive over here. Looking forward to more of your cooking journey with MJ!

  2. We have a fishing trip coming up and I'm marking this to make with any fish we catch. Looks good!

  3. The garam masala would have definitely brought out the Indian flavors. Have to find some cod.

  4. I'm glad you gave Indian food a try! It is popular here in Southern Ontario, there is a large Indian and South Asian population in the Greater Toronto Area.

  5. So pleased you dipped your toe in the water with Madhur Jaffrey, and hope you will develop a love affair with Indian food. This fish dish looks wonderful - I would definitely like to try that.