Middle Eastern Fish Casserole

October 04, 2011
 Middle Eastern Fish Casserole

Middle Eastern spices for Fish Casserole recipe.

We are familiar with '1000 things to do before I die'...even a book was published on... '1000 places to see before you die'.

Well, my dearest darling, Hnot wanting lose out... has his own "motto" ~ 

1000’s Food To Taste Before I Die
(note the 's'... as in many thousands)

This Middle Eastern Fish Casserole marked the beginning of his 'mission'...
hmm... looks like I have to keep on buying cookbooks and spend hours blog hopping. Nevermind that I've been labelled as Cookbook Addict, Blogoholic Mom, and the new title to add to the list ~ 'Prop' Monster.

I have a perfect solution ~ save money, space and time in order to fulfill H's mission ... get me a laptop (preferably the ones with the bitten Apple logo on the cover ... hint...hint)... I can browse, trying out new recipes, following its instruction in the comfort of my kitchen... saves $$$ as I dont have to buy cookbooks, saves me from running to and fro from study to kitchen, save us the 'filing' headache plus storage too...furthermore, we should be environmentally friendly ~ save a lot of trees by not printing recipes on papers...Right?
Isn't this a brilliant idea?

 Middle Eastern Fish Casserole recipe.

This is my second attempt cooking Middle Eastern Fish Casserole. I used Barramundi fillets in my first attempt. The fish didn't hold its shape, flesh became soft and fell apart... plus I wasn't too excited with the photos I took....
So I use my all time favourite ~ Hiramasa fillets instead of Barramundi... and it tasted much better as Hiramasa soaked in the flavours of spices and fresh herbs ..  Excellent.
If I were to describe the taste... I would say it is quite similar to curry with subtle bitterness with every bite, I loved the taste despite the bitterness  note: I dislike anything bitter!!!... bitter taste came from the pierced lime, perhaps next time I'll choose the smallest lime I could find..

1 down... many thousands recipes to go, oh well...

Middle Eastern Fish Casserole Recipe (adapted from Just Add Spice from Lyndey Milan and Ian Hemphil)

1/4 cup olive oil
1 brown onion - chopped
2 cloves of garlic - chopped
2 tablespoon dill  (in the tube)
1 bunch of coriander - chopped
2 large tomatoes - chopped
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 lime - pierced few times with sharp knife
1 1/2 cups of water
4 Hiramasa fillets cut into 3cm thick
2 tablespoon flour
Middle Eastern spice

1 teaspoon cardamom pods
2 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoon ground tumeric
1 teaspoon salt
  1. Ground all the Middle Eastern spices.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saucepan and saute the onion until transparent. Add garlic, tomatoes, tomato paste, dill, coriander and lime with 2 teaspoon of the Middle Eastern Spice. Give it a good stir. Add 1 1/2 cups of water. Cover the saucepan, bring to boil then lower the heat to a simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Prepare the fish while the sauce is simmering...
  4. Pat dry the fish. Rub the remaining of the spice onto the fish, and dust with plain flour. Heat up the frying pan with the remaining of the olive oil, cook the fish cutlets lightly on both sides... to seal.
  5. Transfer the fish to the simmering sauce.
  6. Season to taste and simmer for another 10 minutes until the fish is cooked.
  7. Serve with steam rice.


  1. I like that moto ! As for the fish .. it looks so damn yummy. Never had those fishes u mentioned but need to look for it for sure.

  2. delicious! haha, and I like your motto! ^^

  3. I am so going to try this Middle Eastern spice blend! Lately, I have been cooking EVERY savory dish with Moroccan La Kama spice mixture, and now I have something new to try.

    Thank you for sharing! As usual the food looks delicious and the photos, beautiful!

  4. Living in Dubai. I really must start cooking more Middle Eastern dishes- this fish looks gorgeous. I'll probably use kingsish. And I have been called all the above names too.

  5. I also need a new laptop and would be happly to have one with the bitten aplle logo... ;-P

    Middle Eastern food is so amazing! I can never get enough of it. That stew just looks and sounds mouthwatering!



  6. If I ask Vijay about 1000 food to taste before he dies, he'd say 'anything you make will be good baby...' and maybe Hokkien mee.

    On cookbooks, while I use online resources a lot, I still spend some money on the classics (such as Mastering the Art of French Cooking etc.)

    I also bought a couple of blogger's cookbooks which I think are one of a kind and not all the recipes are published online.

  7. That's a great motto and I absolutely support and love your solution! haha
    As for the fish casserole..one word...SEDAP!!! :)

  8. By the time I try this recipe, hope the bitten apple is also with you : ).

  9. haha lisa! your emoticons and subscripts make your blog so entertaining to read as i can imagine your expression as you're typing it LOL! i hope you get that "special present". looking forward to many more recipes from your "mission" haha

  10. kankana
    Thank you...
    As for the fish, any firm white fish would be great for the dish


    No worries... :D

    LOL...A hobby to keep our brain ticking :D

    Lets hope Santa will grant our wish :)

    awwww...That is sweet of him :D

    LOL... memang Sedap :D

    I hope so too... :)

    Keeping fingers and toes cross ;)

  11. I love that motto of 1000 foods to try before you die.. (I do have the one with the 1000 places to see before you die..)
    But on the buying an apple (the one with the bitten logo thingie) and then not buying anymore cookbooks... sorry, that just doesn't work.. See I have one of those laptops AND a HUGE stack of cookbooks that gets added to daily....lol
    Love your fishdish!

  12. wow, Lisa this looks so good, I think I can have extra rice ;)

  13. Junglefrog
    LOL... deep inside, I know that the laptop with bitten apple logo will not stop me from buying cookbooks :D... but shhh... I am trying to get one first ;)


  14. This fish's name is so similar to my maiden name (Hirasawa). LOL. What a delicious looking meal. I like your solution Lisa! ;-) I wonder if I can come up with 1000 or is it hard? That's a good question. I've never thought of making the list. At 12:30am, I'm very hungry looking at your beautiful photo... I see I missed another post. Going to check now.

  15. Definitely a must have! Great clicks, Lisa.

  16. This is calling out to me! Can i use salmon??

  17. Nami
    Hiramasa ~It must have been named after Japanese Fish Farmer... ;)

    Thanks Angie

    tough question! I have not tried using salmon... the fish needs to be cook slightly longer and salmon will be flaky if cooked too long...
    but worth trying :D

  18. ok..this will be one of the 1000 dishes to try before i die.....

    love the spices and herb combination in this dish

  19. Tried this for dinner...loved it with the addition of more heat aka chillies :) thanks for sharing ;)

  20. tigerfish
    oh definitely :D

    hurray... :D. What would we do without chilli, right ;P
    Thanks for the feedback