“This is a great dish to prepare when you want to serve an impressive barbecue option. Choose trout fillets of even thickness for this dish. The younger the banana leaf, the better – it’s more pliable and easier to work with. Older leaves can be brittle, and will need blanching before use.”
- 175 gm (200ml) coconut oil
- 75 gm (1/3 cup) red curry paste (see recipe for <a href='http://www.gourmettraveller.com.au/martin-boetz-red-curry-of-beef-with-green-peppercorns-wild-ginger-and-holy-basil.htm'>red curry of beef</a>)
- 20 (25gm) pea eggplant
- 2 young coconuts, flesh scooped out and thinly sliced
- 55 gm shaved light palm sugar, or to taste
- 100 ml fish sauce, or to taste
- 4 pieces of banana leaf, 15cm x 30cm each
- 2 rainbow trout, filleted and pinboned
- 20 Thai basil leaves, plus extra to serve
- 200 ml coconut cream
- 4 kaffir lime leaves, cut into julienne, plus extra to serve
- To serve: long red chilli, cut into julienne, and fried shallots
- 1Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add curry paste and stir until oil separates from the paste. Add pea eggplant and half the coconut and cook for 5 minutes, then add sugar and fish sauce and season well to taste – it should be hot, salty and sweet. Cool paste mixture for 5 minutes in a bowl.
- 2Meanwhile, place half the banana leaf pieces on a work surface and wipe clean with a damp cloth. Lay the leaves half overlapping on a board with the natural lines running in the same direction. Lay one trout fillet on top, skin-side down. Spread half the paste evenly over fillet, pressing pea eggplant into fillet, scatter over half the Thai basil, and spoon over a quarter of the coconut cream and a quarter of the remaining coconut flesh. Sprinkle over half the kaffir lime leaf and place another fillet on top, flesh-side down. Fold banana leaf over the fish, fold in sides and fold to enclose, creating a parcel effect, then secure with a skewer. Repeat to make a second parcel.
- 3Meanwhile, preheat oven to 180C. Heat a char-grill over medium-high heat. Grill parcels for 2 minutes, then turn and grill for another 2 minutes. Transfer to an oven tray and roast until fish is cooked through (8-10 minutes).
- 4To serve, open banana leaf parcel and place on a plate. Scatter over remaining young coconut flesh, basil, kaffir lime, chilli and fried shallot and drizzle with remaining coconut cream.
This recipe is from the November 2009 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
Drink Suggestion: 2008 Vinea Marson Rosé from Heathcote, Victoria. Drink suggestion by Sam Christie