Daily Archives: March 24, 2011

Sesame-Broiled Tilapia with Coconut Red Curry

A certain special friend, who shall remain nameless, turns her nose up at tilapia as the lowest fish on the pescatarian totem pole. Something about tilapia being a cheap bottom-feeder. ūüôā

Tilapia are indeed cheap, but in my opinion, are a great vehicle for strongly flavored dishes due to their clean taste. I will note that I’ve read that farm-raised tilapia can be unhealthy due to the amount of corn the fish are fed, so be mindful when you are shopping. When handled properly, this fish is not mealy or fishy, but instead a quick and yummy weeknight meal option.

Grant typically fries tilapia for fish tacos and it’s one of my favorite dishes. But I need something beyond fried. Then my friend Merissa wrote me about a delicious tilapia curry she had recently made. The resulting recipe is all her.

A wonderful and rather light curry simmers on your stove and is poured over tilapia fillets perfectly broiled in toasted sesame oil. It filled our house with wonderful smells and the taste met our expectations.

Sesame-Broiled Tilapia with Coconut Red Curry


  • 2 ¬†teaspoons ¬†dark sesame oil, divided
  • 2¬† teaspoons ¬†minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 ¬†garlic cloves, minced
  • 1¬† cup ¬†finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 ¬†cup ¬†chopped green onions
  • 1 ¬†teaspoon ¬†curry powder
  • 2 ¬†teaspoons ¬†red curry paste
  • 1/2 ¬†teaspoon ¬†ground cumin
  • 4¬† teaspoons ¬†low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 ¬†tablespoon ¬†brown sugar
  • 1/2 ¬†teaspoon ¬†salt, divided
  • 1 ¬†(14-ounce) can light coconut milk
  • 2 ¬†tablespoons ¬†chopped fresh cilantro
  • 4 ¬†(6-ounce) tilapia fillets (we used 2)
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 ¬†cups ¬†hot cooked jasmine rice
  • 4¬† lime wedges

Preheat broiler.

Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add ginger and garlic; cook 1 minute. Add pepper and onions; cook 1 minute. Stir in curry powder, curry paste, and cumin; cook 1 minute. Add soy sauce, sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and coconut milk; bring to a simmer (do not boil). Remove from heat; stir in cilantro.

Brush fish with 1 teaspoon oil; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Place fish on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Broil 7 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Serve fish with sauce, rice, and lime wedges.

When I made this, I packed it into a picnic basket for a picnic at Reynolda Park. What a great departure from the typical fried-chicken picnic fare. That curry is so delicious, I could drink it with a straw!

Enjoy, friends! xoxo