After my brother went fishing on a charter boat, we had so much mackerel to eat. This recipe was an easy and flavoursome way to use up some of the leftovers.


  • 2 tsps of coriander seeds

  • 1 tsp of cumin seeds

  • 1 tsp of fennel seeds

  • 1 cardamom pod (seeds)

  • 1 clove of garlic

  • 1 tbsp of ground turmeric

  • pinch of salt and pepper

  • 1 tbsp butter

  • 2 tbsp olive oil

  • 2 cups of rice

  • 1 L of stock (fish, prawn or vegetable)

  • 500 g cooked fish (strongly flavoured, firm-fleshed eg. mackerel), flaked

  • 3 carrots, cubed

  • 1.5 cups of peas

  • flaked almonds (toasted optional)

  • parsley


  • 1.

    In a pan, lightly toast coriander, cumin, fennel and cardamom seeds until slightly brown and flavours are released.

  • 2.

    Remove from heat and grind with garlic, turmeric, salt and pepper in a mortar and pestle, until a consistent texture is formed.

  • 3.

    In a wide-base pan (30cm), melt butter with oil. Add rice and stir until glossy.

  • 4.

    Add stock and ground spices and stir briefly to combine evenly. Cover pan, maintaining heat until boiling, then reduce to a simmer. Stir once or twice throughout cooking, adding water if necessary.

  • 5.

    Before rice is cooked (approx. 10 mins), add carrots and peas.

  • 6.

    Just before removing from heat, add fish and mix to combine. (Fish only needs to be warmed through.)

  • 7.

    Serve in a large dish, sprinkled with flaked almonds and chopped parsley.


Be generous with the spices; they make the difference!

Chicken could be used instead of fish.

Zucchini is also an option to add more vegetables.

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