Luke Nguyen’s cod with turmeric and tomato


Luke Nguyen’s cod with turmeric and tomato

This flavoursome fish dish includes inspiration from all over the word with mouth-watering results.

Serves: 2


  • 175g fine-grain instant burghul, also known as bulgur wheat (or use ½ cup quinoa as a substitute)
  • 80ml olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 French shallots, diced
  • 1 lemongrass stem, white part only, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 2 tbs fish sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 long red chilli, sliced
  • 200g cod fillet
  • edible flowers, to garnish (optional)

Herb salad

  • 6 beetroot leaves
  • 2 fennel fronds
  • 1 handful rocket leaves
  • 6 mint leaves
  • 8 coriander leaves


  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp lemon juice


  1. Prepare the burghul according to the packet instructions.
  2. Wash the herb salad ingredients in cold water, then dry them thoroughly. Roughly slice the beetroot leaves and fennel fronds and place in a mixing bowl with the remaining salad ingredients. Combine the dressing ingredients and drizzle over the salad. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over medium heat, then add the olive oil. Add the garlic, shallot and lemongrass and sauté for 5 minutes, or until the mixture is fragrant and soft. Add the turmeric and tomato and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes, or until the tomato becomes soft. Stir in the fish sauce, sugar, cayenne pepper, chilli and 60ml water. Simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the cod and cook for 3 minutes on each side, or until just cooked; the flesh will flake when tested with a fork.
  5. Divide the burghul (or quinoa) among serving plates. Arrange the cod and herb salad over the top. Garnish with edible flowers and serve.

This is an edited extract from Luke Nguyen's France by Luke Nguyen published by Hardie Grant Books ($59.95, is available in stores nationally).


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