‘Goraka’ which is a common Sri Lankan household ingredient, known as Garcinia Cambogia (scientific name), has been used in Sri Lanka since ancient times for its medicinal and culinary values. It has become one of the most demanded ingredient in the world recently, because of its scientific researches towards weight loss, fights against cancer cells and also immune system’s enhancement.
‘Jaadi’ is one of my favourite dishes from Sri Lanka. Traditionally, Jaadi takes around a month or two to be cured depending on the variety of fish. Due to its chemical and biological hazards, people tend to stay away from this food. One or two months of curing a fish in a room temperature can develop hazardous chemical and microbiological activity in fish. It needs to be prepared in a controlled environment. Therefore, I thought of bringing the flavours of Jaadi to contemporary Sri Lankan cuisine. The recipe below is for one fillet of salmon. One fillet of salmon could weight between 800g – 1200g. I assume that it is around 1200g.
Ingredients
1 Fillet of Salmon
350g goraka Paste
120g salt
120g sugar
100ml Arrack or Malibu
20 each curry leaves
1 each fresh red or green chilli
3 each lime or lemon zest
2 cloves of garlic
2 tsp of crushed ginger
2 tsp of crushed lemongrass
30g coriander seeds
5g cumin
5g fenugreek
5g fennel seeds
1” cinnamon
15g black pepper
50g desiccated coconut
Method
1.    Roast dry spices on a pan till light brown. Tip – I prefer using the oven at 160°C for 40 minutes.
2.    Roast coconut separately. If you use the oven roast at 150 °C for 8 – 12 minutes till golden brown.
3.    Bring the temperature of dry ingredients down to room temperature.
4.    Remove the skin of the salmon fillet.
5.    Using a food processor blitz all the ingredients together till it turns to a paste.
6.    Lay the fish fillet inside a glass or ceramic tray (baking dish). If it doesn’t have enough space, portion the fish accordingly. Remember, the size of the fillet can differ the timing of cure. Basically, the tail side will be cured quicker than top loin. I usually top loin turns a little firm.
7.    Cover the whole salmon fillet with the paste. Make sure the whole fillet is covered of the paste.  Cover the top using a cling wrap and refrigerate for 48 hours.
8.    Scrape the paste of the fillet, give it a quick rinse over cold runny water.
9.    You can serve the whole salmon fillet as it is for the guests to serve them selves or you can arrange portioned pieces in a presentable way. This can last for few days in the fridge if you pre-make it. It is best to consume while its cold.
Srimal Perera
Chef de partie
One80 Restaurant and Bar, Copthorne Hotel
Wellington