Fish & Mish

This delicious and unique recipe has been in my family for decades. My mother remembers it as one of my grandmother’s best recipes and I remember it as one of my mother’s yummiest recipes! The dried apricot sheet (or Qamar El Din in Arabic) is what makes it special – the secret ingredient if you like.
As for the Mish, it is a traditional Sudanese-style yoghurt that is practically eaten with every dish. There is always a bowl of Mish on the table in a Sudanese household! It literally translates to ‘not’ in English….. but don’t ask me why!

Ingredients for the Red Chilli Sauce: 1 tbsp red chilli powder. Juice of ½ a lemon. 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar. ½ tsp sea salt. ½ tsp black pepper. ½ tsp cumin powder.

You can increase or reduce the amount of chilli powder depending on your chilli stamina! Mix all the above ingredients together and you’ll have yourself a zingy red chilli sauce.

Ingredients for the Mish: 400g labneh. 1 tbsp black seeds. 2 tbsp Bulgarian sheep cheese. 5 fresh whole green chillies.

Mix all the ingredients and store in the fridge for 3 days before eating. This is to allow all the flavours to be released in the yoghurt. The older the Mish is the better is tastes!

Ingredients for the Fish Bake: 3 medium onions chopped. 1 lemon. 2 tbsp tomato paste. 1 Hamour (or alternative) fish fillet skinned and de-boned. ¼ cup rice. 4 medium tomatoes chopped. 4×4 inches dried apricot sheet (qamar eldin in Arabic)

Soak the dried apricot in ¼ cup of water. In a saucepan, fry the onions in some olive oil until a caramelised brown colour is reached. Add the tomatoes, rice, tomato paste and stir. Add the soaked dried apricot with the water then season with sea salt, black pepper, dried coriander and paprika. Leave to simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes or until the rice is half cooked.

Pre-heat the oven to 250 degrees. Cut up the fish into medium sized cubes. Season with sea salt, black pepper, cumin, garlic and the juice of 1 lemon. Lay out the fillets in a baking tray side by side leaving as little gaps as possible. Pour the tomato and rice mixture on top of the fish and spread it out to cover the whole tray. Place the tray uncovered in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.

Serve with a dollop of Mish and a drizzle of red chilli sauce with some bread on the side. Bon apetit!

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