Poached Tilapia with Tart Coconut Milk and Garlic

Kokum Muchee

Preparation info
  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

By Raghavan Iyer

Published 2008

  • About

I sampled this curry back in Mumbai at the home of Mrs. Desai, my Marathi teacher from my childhood’s Jesuit-run private school. She poached skin-on, bone-in, whole pomfrets, but my version eliminates the frustration of having to pick out the bones from each mouthful.


  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 pound skinless tilapia fillets (see Tips)


  1. Sprinkle the turmeric over both sides of the fillets, rubbing it in. Refrigerate, covered, for at least 30 minutes, to allow the spice to flavor and color the fillets.
  2. Combine the kokum and the boiling water in a small heatproof bowl, and let it steep for 10 to 15 minutes to extract the kokum’s slightly bitter juices. Then squeeze the kokum pieces to extract all t