The second course of our High Heel Gourmet-inspired Thai feast was Thai fish mousse (Hor Mok Pla). The flavors are quite similar to Thai fish cakes (Tod Mun Pla), as it is fish with Thai red curry paste. But the texture is quite different, as it is steamed rather than deep fried, and rather than crunchy beans it is mixed with herbs and served with steamed cabbage. The coconut cream on top provides a nice contrast with the spicy fish mousse. It was absolutely delicious and relatively simple, so I’ll definitely make this again.
For this recipe you will need coconut cream and thin coconut milk. If you allow the container of coconut milk to stand, the coconut cream will float on top and you can easily scoop it off. What remains is thin coconut milk. If your coconut milk does not separate, choose another brand because it has ingredients that do not belong there. Coconut milk should have only coconut and water as ingredients, nothing else.
450 grams (1 lb) fillet of white fish (I used wolffish)
3 Tbsp Kaeng Kua curry paste
500 ml (2 cups) coconut milk, split into coconut cream and thin coconut milk
40 grams (1.5 oz) thai basil, leaves picked
2 Tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp palm sugar
400 grams (.9 lb) napa cabbage, shredded
1 tsp rice flour
8 cilantro leaves
1 tsp minced cilantro leaves
1 small red chili, julienned
1 1/2 Tbsp kaffir lime leaves chiffonade
Pick the leaves of 20 grams (.8 oz) of Thai basil and add them to the fish mixture (Miranti adds them whole, I added them as chiffonade). Add a tablespoon of chiffonaded kaffir lime leaves, and a teaspoon of minced cilantro leaves.
Use ramekins or other containers — I thought it was nice to line a ramekin with banana leaf. If you can find disposable banana leaf containers they might be best, as the liquid that will be released by the fish mousse when it is cooked will drain automatically that way.
Divide the steamed naba cabbage between the ramekins.
We enjoyed this with a medium-bodied off-dry Gewurztraminer from Alsace.