Goan Fish Curry Recipe

Updated on Jan 11, 2017 by Kathryn Burrington

Blog > Goan Fish Curry Recipe

The one dish that it would be a crime to miss while visiting Goa has to be their fish curry. Here is our recipe for the perfect Goan Fish Curry.

While different chefs recommend different fish as the ideal ingredient in their fish curry recipe, the most important thing to consider is what fresh fish is available in your area and perhaps try experimenting with it. I’d also suggest that you use the Good Fish Guide website to check its sustainability. Ideally it should be a firm white fish such as pollock, that won’t fall apart in the pan, avoiding too delicately flavoured fish such as halibut, turbot or monkfish, or the too strongly flavoured tuna or mackerel. Prawns are also an excellent alternative, as is a mix of fish and other seafood.

Goan Fish Curry Recipe

Serves 4

For the masala:

  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 2 star anise
  • 8 dried red Kashmiri chillies
  • 1 tbsp palm sugar
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 3cm fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1½ tbsp white vinegar

Other ingredients

  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large tomato, grated
  • 400ml tin of coconut milk
  • 2 fresh green chillies, deseeded and thinly sliced
  • 600g firm white fish, cut into 2cm chunks (or 400g fish with 200g raw prawns)
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • 10 curry leaves
  • Coriander leaves and a sprinkling of Nigella seeds, to garnish


  1. First toast the masala spices in a dry pan until they become aromatic.
  2. Grind in a food processor or a pestle and mortar.
  3. Mix in the remaining masala ingredients (salt and vinegar) and leave to one side.
  4. Pour 2 tbsp of oil in a large pan over a medium heat.
  5. Fry the onion until softened and beginning to colour.
  6. Stir in the masala mix.
  7. Keep stirring for a few minutes until there is strong smell of spices.
  8. Stir in the tomato and simmer until the sauce thickens.
  9. Add the coconut milk, 100ml water and the chillies and bring to the boil.
  10. Reduce the heat to a simmer for a further 10 minutes or until the sauce has thickened again.
  11. Add the prawns (if using) and continue simmering until they are cooked through (about 5 minutes).
  12. Season to taste.
  13. Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan on a high heat.
  14. Add the curry leaves and mustard seeds and cook for 30 seconds.
  15. Once they have started popping stir them into the curry.
  16. Serve with rice and warmed naan bread and garnish with a few coriander leaves and Nigella seeds.




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