Coconut Chutney-Coated Fish Parcels
- 8 banana leaf sections, each about 12 inches (30 cm) long (see Notes)
- Vegetable spray
- 3 cups (750 mL) or frozen coconut, fresh, grated, (thawed if frozen)
- 12 cloves garlic
- 4 green chilies, preferably serranos (2 inches/5 cm long)
- 2 tsp (10 mL) cumin seeds
- 1 tsp (5 mL) sugar, granulated
- 1 tsp (5 mL) salt, or to taste
- 1 lime, or lemon
- 4 cups (1 L) cilantro leaves, including soft stems
- 8 halibut steaks, (1 inch/2.5 cm thick) or any similar fish
- 1/4 cup (50 mL) white vinegar
DirectionsRinse and wipe banana leaves and trim any dry ends.
Lay one leaf on work surface, rib side up.
Using a sharp knife held almost horizontally (knife should be almost parallel to work surface), carefully slice away part of thick rib, if necessary.
Spray dull side with vegetable spray.
Repeat with remaining leaves.
Make the chutney: In a food processor, process coconut, garlic, chilies, cumin seeds, sugar and salt until coarse.
Add lime juice, then cilantro, in batches, processing until fine and scraping sides of bowl frequently.
Transfer to a bowl.
Carefully coat each piece of fish on both sides with 1/4-inch (5 cm) thick paste.
Place one piece of coated fish 3 inches (5 cm) from end of oiled side of banana leaf.
Cover with 3-inch (5 cm) flap.
Fold in sides and continue to fold into a parcel.
Secure with kitchen twine.
Repeat with remaining fish and leaves.
Fill steamer with 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) water.
Place wrapped fish in steamer and cook for about 30 minutes.
To serve, place parcels on platter and allow each person to unwrap package.