Kokoda – The Taste of Fiji
Although the month of March is officially autumn, Sydney’s weather still calls for an effortless summery meal. Drawing inspiration from a recent Fijian holiday, this recipe is a tasty, fragrant celebration of seafood that has been gently cured and paired with key ingredients.
The passionfruit is the unexpected element, however the tang and sweetness is well balanced against the lime and coconut milk. The traditional version of the dish usually features fish exclusively but I’ve added scallops for a little decadence.
It’s all about buying the freshest seafood available, taking a bit of extra care with the preparation and chopping, and allowing plenty of time for the lime to work its curing magic.
After the simplest assembly, add a generous sprinkling of fresh coriander for some green goodness. This is a tropical dish that works perfectly as an appetiser for two, or you can prepare a larger portion and serve it as a share plate for entertaining your friends.
300gms snapper, skin and bones removed
12 sea scallops, sliced in half
¼ red onion, finely diced
½ Lebanese cucumber, finely diced
1 cup coconut milk
1 long green chilli, finely chopped
Small bunch fresh coriander, chopped, extra for serving
1. Carefully cut the snapper into small bite-size pieces and place in a bowl;
2. Slice the scallops in half and add to the bowl with the snapper;
3. Squeeze the juice of 3 fresh limes over the snapper pieces and scallops and gently stir through;
4. Add the coconut milk to the seafood and gently stir through;
5. Cover the bowl with cling film and place in the fridge for 3 hours to cure. This will ensure the fish and scallops are cooked through by the juice of the limes;
6. In the meantime, finely dice the red onion, cucumber and green chilli, chop the coriander and cut the passionfruits in half;
7. When the seafood has been cured for 3 hours, remove the bowl from the fridge. Drain a little of the coconut milk, ensuring there is plenty of moisture and enough coconut milk remaining to coat the seafood generously. Don’t discard the drained coconut milk as you may wish to add a spoonful or two at the end to serve;
8. Add the chopped ingredients and scooped out passionfruit pulp to the mixture. Lightly stir again to combine all the ingredients;
9. Sprinkle over some more fresh coriander, add a wedge of lime and serve.
Dana Sims is a Sydney-based food and prop stylist who has grown up in the Eastern Suburbs and loves to create delicious food for entertaining and family. She is inspired by the fresh produce we have access to here in Sydney. For ideas, recipes and styling inspiration, check out her Instagram, @stone_and_twine.