I got this recipe from my Bangladeshi neighbor Fatma–Jazaha Allah Khayr. I wanted a fish dish that I could serve with rice, that only had spices. No tomatoes or tomato paste. I had had this a number of times in her home, and I loved it. So, I decided to make it myself. It turned out great. It has all the spices that we are used to in the southern part of Yemen–Aden. Plus of course we love our fish at least 6 times a week. So this appeals to the south Yemeni palette very well. You will need:
1) 2 Tilapia fillets halved
2) 1 big or 2 medium sized potatoes, quartered.
3) 2 medium onions, finely diced
4) 2-3 tablespoons of Olive Oil –more if you like.
5) salt to taste
6) 1 teaspoon of chilly powder-less if you don’t like it spicy
7) 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
8) 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
9) 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
10) 3 tablespoons of finely cut cilantro
11) green chilly pepper halved, lengthwise
12) 3 minced garlic
13) tsp of minced fresh ginger
To start take ingredients 6-13 [the spices and the garlic and ginger], place in a bowl and add 1/2 cup of water. Leave aside.
In a pan, under medium high heat, add the oil and the onions and brown. Then add the potatoes and sautee for a few minutes. Then add the spices in the bowl and turn the heat down a little and let boil for a few minutes, until the gravy/yellow sauce thickens. Then add the fish and fry in the spices. Turn once. Do not turn too much or else the fish will break. In my culture, it is a sign of a bad cook ha ha ha !
Once the fish starts turning white, add enough water to cover the fish. Add salt to taste and let boil until the sauce thickens to desired consistency. When it starts to thicken add the chilly pepper. When it is ready garnish with the cilantro and serve on a bed of which rice, or rice cooked with lentils.