Curried Coconut Crusted Hake with Blueberry-Pear Balsamic Reduction

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A while back, when my son was still eating purees,  I knew I wanted to make fish for dinner.  I already had plans to make blueberry pear puree for my baby boy. Knowing I’d have lots of blueberry pear, I decided I’d use it to make a sauce for my fish, but then I wanted to encrust my fish in something–only I had no breadcrumbs in the house. In the past, I have used crushed Goldfish crackers to make “breadcrumbs”, which is tasty, but I didn’t think that would go well with blueberry pear compote. So I browsed through my cabinets until my eyes landed on a half-used package of sweetened coconut flakes. Ah-ha! I decided I would toast them, coat my fish in flour mixed with cumin and curry powder, plus some salt and pepper, and make a curried, coconut-crusted fish.  Below is the recipe I came up with:

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups coconut flakes (sweetened or unsweetened), toasted*
  • 1 package blueberries and 1 pear, washed, peeled, and chopped
  • 2 filets of hake or other dense white fish
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 to 1 TB of curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • white rice
  • baby spinach
  • shaved onion soaked in red wine vinegar

The Sauce:

  1. Add rinsed blueberries and pear to small saucepan. Cover with water and boil 15 minutes or until pear chunks are fork-tender.
  2. Drain fruit,reserving 1/2 cup of liquid, and add to blender. Puree to desired consistency (I left mine a bit chunky).
  3. Return fruit to pan. Add 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, 1/4 cup white sugar, and 1/2 cup of reserved liquid.
  4. Bring to boil, then lower to medium-low heat and let simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes.

Other Prep:

*While berries are cooking, bring another pot of water to boil for rice. Cook rice according to directions, or use less water for a less sticky rice (jasmine or basmati work well for this preparation: 1 cup of rice = 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups water)
*While berries are cooking, spread coconut on baking pan and bake at 350 for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until toasted golden brown.

The Fish:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375
  2. Rinse filets and pat dry.
  3. Fork-wisk one egg and add to flat container for dipping fish.
  4. In a second flat container, mix flour, curry, cumin, salt, and pepper with a fork.
  5. In a third container, spread toasted coconut flakes
  6. Dip each filet first in four mixture, then coat with egg, and finally cover with toasted coconut.
  7. Place in an oiled dish and bake at 375 for 12-15 minutes depending on thickness of your filets.

Plating it:

  1. Wash spinach and spin it dry.
  2. When rice is done, use a 1 cup measuring cup of 4 oz. ramekin to scoop rice mixture onto plate.
  3. Top with spinach.
  4. Top spinach with shaved onion that has been soaked in red wine vinegar.
  5. Place fish filet atop bed of spinach and cover with blueberry-pear balsamic reduction.
  6. Enjoy!!!
This turned out great. We loved the combination of sweet, spicy, and tangy flavors. I will definitely make this again!
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