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Asam Pedas (Malay-style Hot & Sour Fish Curry)

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Servings: 4
Author: Meena, www.hookedonheat.com


  • 3 tbsp light cooking oil
  • 1/4 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 5-6 fresh curry leaves
  • 2-3 garlic cloves finely sliced
  • 1 medium onion thinly sliced
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 medium tomatoes finely chopped
  • salt to taste
  • water as needed
  • 3 boneless tilapia fillets (or any other firm white fish of choice) cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 tbsp tamarind paste
  • fresh cilantro leaves finely chopped for garnish


  • Heat oil in a deep pan and add mustard seeds, curry leaves, and garlic and let it start to sizzle. Add in sliced onions and let brown slightly.
  • Toss in spices, chopped tomatoes and salt, and stir-fry for a few minutes till tomatoes begin to soften and pulp.
  • Add in a cup of water, cover with a lid and let it come to a slight boil. Add in fish pieces and continue to cook for a few more minutes till fish is almost cooked through.
  • Stir in tamarind paste and cook covered for another 3-4 minutes till the fish has soaked in all the flavours. You can add in a bit water at this point depending on the consistency of the curry you'd prefer.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander and serve warm over steamed rice.