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Recipe: Smoked Hake, Spiced Kale & Coconut Milk

30 October 2015 at 10:51

Smoked_Hake_web.jpgThis is a lovely warming dish making use of smoked hake and seasonal kale which is an iconic Scottish vegetable. Smoked hake I think has a great texture and flavour.

If you can’t find hake, use cod, but do pester your fishmonger to try to source it. These fish are out there and are worth following up. The smokeyness of the fish goes well with the coconut milk and the colours are great too.

Try using some Hebridean smoked salt to enhance the smoke or even the seaweed flavoured one.


200g kale
4 cloves garlic peeled
2 whole red chillies seeded
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp turmeric
2 tblsp vegetable oil
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
4 fillets of smoked hake
1 tsp Hebridean Sea salt
4 tblsp coconut milk


  1. Trim the kale and remove the tough stalk ends and cut into roughly 3cm pieces
  2. Blitz the garlic and chilli together with enough water to form a light paste
  3. Pour into a bowl and add the three ground spices
  4. Heat a large pan with the oil and stir in the cumin seeds, stir gently until they sizzle. Turn the heat down and add the spice mix and fry for a few minutes.
  5. Add the kale and stir to really mix through, add a little water. Push the fish fillets carefully into the mixture .Cover and cook gently for 10 minutes.
  6. Remove the lid, remove the fish and keep warm, add the coconut milk and raise the temperature and cook until the mixture just coats the kale.

Notes Kale is a green brassica and comes in many varieties, such as curly, red Russian black or cavolo nero (same thing!) Strip the leaves off the stalks and use them in soup.

Recipe by Christopher Trotter
Food Photography by Caroline Trotter