Green mangos have a slightly sour taste, which makes them a natural pairing in sweet-and-sour curry dishes. All mangos are green when unripe and some remain green when they ripen. Use mangos that are unripe but firm or that have a slight indentation when pressed with your thumb.
4 cups Curry Mango Sauce (recipe follows)
Four 1/2 lb. yellowtail, snapper, or grouper fillets, skin scored
1 green mango, cut into large chunks
1/2 cup mixed fresh cilantro, mint, and basil leaves, julienned, for garnish
Curry Mango Sauce
3 tbsp canola oil
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
One 2" piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 tbsp shrimp paste or anchovy paste
5 curry leaves (or 1 tbsp madras curry powder)
2 tbsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp fenugreek seeds
2 whole star anise
1 Thai chili, chopped (leave the seeds in for a spicier curry)
1 green mango, diced
1 beefsteak tomato, seeded and chopped
1 stalk lemongrass, hard exterior removed and chopped
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup tamarind purée, or 1/4 cup each fresh lime juice and white vinegar
One 14-oz. can unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro with stems
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp brown sugar
Step 1: Pour the curry sauce into a very large sauté pan and bring to a simmer. Heat on low, add the fillets, cover, and gently cook for 3-5 minutes, or until the flesh is opaque and flakes easily. Add the mango chunks to the warm sauce and remove the pan from the heat.
Step 2: To serve, spoon some sauce onto each plate, lay a fillet in the centre (or you may cut the fillets into smaller pieces), and top with more sauce and mangos; garnish with the mixed herbs.
Curry Mango Sauce
Step 1: Heat the canola oil in a large saucepan over medium heat and sauté the shallots, garlic, and ginger, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the shrimp paste or anchovy paste, curry leaves or curry powder, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, star anise, cloves, and Thai chili; cook for another 2 minutes. Add the mangos, tomatoes, lemongrass, onions, and tamarind purée (or lime juice and vinegar). Add 4 cups water and simmer for 5 minutes.
Step 2: Add the coconut milk and cilantro. Simmer for 35-40 minutes. Strain the sauce and discard the solids, then add the soy sauce and brown sugar.
Michelle Bernstein, Michy's, Miami, Florida
Gabriele Marewski, Paradise Farms, Homestead, Florida (mangos)
Reprinted with permission from Darryl Estrine and Kelly Kochendorfer's Harvest to Heat (2010 Taunton).