Assam Fish Head Curry: A Fiery Feast for Seafood Aficionados – Seaco Online
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Assam Fish Head Curry: A Fiery Feast for Seafood Aficionados

Assam fish head curry is a popular dish in Singapore that has gained recognition for its unique taste and texture. The dish is made by cooking fish head in a spicy and sour curry, which is flavoured with tamarind, chilli, and other spices. It is often served with rice or bread and is a favourite among locals and tourists alike.

A large pot bubbling with spicy Assam fish head curry, filled with chunks of fish head, okra, and tomatoes, surrounded by a fragrant cloud of curry leaves and tamarind

The dish has gained popularity in recent years, with many restaurants and street vendors offering their own take on the classic recipe. Some establishments have even been awarded the Michelin Bib Gourmand, a prestigious award given to restaurants that offer quality food at affordable prices. This has helped to bring the dish to a wider audience and has made it a must-try for anyone visiting the city.

If you're looking to try something new and exciting, then Assam fish head curry is definitely worth a try. Whether you're a fan of spicy food or just looking for a unique culinary experience, this dish is sure to satisfy your taste buds. So why not give it a try and see what all the fuss is about?

Key Takeaways

  • Assam fish head curry is a popular dish in Singapore that is known for its unique taste and texture.
  • The dish has gained popularity in recent years, with many restaurants and street vendors offering their own take on the classic recipe.
  • Assam fish head curry is a must-try for anyone visiting the city and has even been awarded the Michelin Bib Gourmand.

Recipe and Ingredients

A pot simmering with spicy curry sauce, filled with chunks of tender fish head, okra, and tomatoes. Surrounding it are bowls of tamarind paste, coconut milk, and assorted spices

Essential Components

To make a delicious Assam Fish Head Curry, you will need a few essential ingredients. These include fresh fish head (such as red snapper or grouper), tomatoes, tamarind, oil, salt, water, and spices. You can also add pineapple, sugar, ginger, shallots, garlic, and long beans to enhance the flavour.

Cooking Procedure

To prepare the curry, you will need to first heat up some oil in a pot and fry some rempah (spice paste) until fragrant. Then, add in the fish head, tomatoes, tamarind juice, and water. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes until the fish is cooked. You can also add in some Ikan Bilis stock or coconut milk to make the curry richer.

Cultural Variations

There are different variations of Assam Fish Head Curry across cultures. The Teochew version uses more vegetables like ladies finger and eggplant, while the Nyonya version uses more spices like laksa leaves and assam paste. The Indian Curry version also uses different spices like dried chillies and coriander powder.

Serving Suggestions

Assam Fish Head Curry is usually served with rice and vegetables like ladies finger. You can also add some laksa leaves for extra flavour. It is best served hot and spicy.

Where to Find

You can find Assam Fish Head Curry at Zi Char stalls or Peranakan restaurants in Singapore. Some popular places include The Curry Wok, Ivins Peranakan Restaurant, Xin Yuan Ji, Samy’s Curry Restaurant, Gu Ma Jia, and Tai Thong Crescent.

Dining Etiquette

When dining on Assam Fish Head Curry, it is customary to use your hands to eat the fish. Make sure to wash your hands before and after eating. If dining in a group, it is polite to offer some of the fish to others at the table. It is also important to respect the cultural traditions associated with the dish.

Health and Nutrition

A steaming pot of Assam fish head curry surrounded by vibrant spices and fresh herbs, with a rich and fragrant aroma filling the air

Nutritional Benefits

Assam fish head curry is not only a delicious dish but also a nutritious one. Fish head is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for brain function and heart health. Tomatoes, which are used in the curry, are a great source of vitamins A and C, which help boost your immune system. Tamarind, another key ingredient, is rich in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties. Pineapple, a fruit often used in the curry, is a good source of vitamin C and manganese, which are essential for bone health and wound healing. Ginger, which is used for its flavour and aroma, has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Dietary Considerations

If you are looking for a halal option, make sure the curry is made with halal-certified ingredients. The curry can be quite spicy, so if you have a low tolerance for spicy food, you may want to reduce the amount of chilli used. The curry also contains sugar and salt, so if you are on a low-sugar or low-salt diet, you may want to adjust the recipe accordingly. The vegetables used in the curry can be varied according to your preferences and dietary needs. For example, if you are on a low-carb diet, you may want to use fewer potatoes and more leafy greens such as spinach or kale.

Frequently Asked Questions

A steaming pot of Assam fish head curry surrounded by aromatic spices and herbs, with a side of fluffy white rice and a bowl of tangy tamarind sauce

What ingredients are needed to make a traditional Assam fish head curry?

To make a traditional Assam fish head curry, you will need ingredients such as fish head, tamarind paste, curry leaves, chillies, ginger, garlic, onions, and tomatoes. Other ingredients such as pineapple, laksa leaves, and torch ginger flower can also be added to enhance the flavour.

How do I cook an authentic Assam fish head curry at home?

To cook an authentic Assam fish head curry at home, you will need to first marinate the fish head with salt and turmeric powder. Then, fry the fish head until it turns golden brown. Next, prepare the curry paste by blending together the tamarind paste, chillies, ginger, garlic, onions, and tomatoes. Fry the paste until it turns fragrant and add in the fish head, pineapple, and laksa leaves. Simmer until the fish head is cooked through and the curry is thickened to your desired consistency.

What's the average cost of Assam fish head curry at a restaurant?

The average cost of Assam fish head curry at a restaurant in Singapore ranges from SGD 20 to SGD 30. However, the price may vary depending on the restaurant's location and the type of fish used.

Can you recommend the best places in Singapore for Assam fish head curry?

Some of the best places in Singapore for Assam fish head curry include Gu Ma Jia, Chye Lye Curry Fish Head Restaurant, and The Banana Leaf Apolo. These restaurants are known for their authentic and flavourful Assam fish head curry.

What distinguishes Nyonya Assam fish head curry from other fish head curry varieties?

Nyonya Assam fish head curry is a unique variety of fish head curry that is characterised by its sour and tangy flavour. It is made with a blend of Malay and Chinese spices and ingredients such as tamarind, torch ginger flower, and laksa leaves. This variety of fish head curry is commonly found in Peranakan cuisine.

Which type of fish is typically used in Assam fish head curry?

The type of fish used in Assam fish head curry can vary, but commonly used fish include red snapper, grouper, and sea bass. These types of fish are known for their firm texture and ability to hold up well in the curry.