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Pacific Islands Raw Fish Salad

There may be minor variations but all refer to the popular salad of marinated fish.

Serves 4-6.


750g/1 1/2 lb fillets of delicate white fish
juice of 4 limes or lemons
4 shallots, peeled and finely sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 firm ripe tomatoes, diced
2 small green seedless cucumbers
1 small red capsicum (bell pepper), diced
1 small green capsicum (bell pepper), diced
2 sliced fresh chillies (optional)
washed and chilled salad greens

400 ml/14 oz can coconut cream
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
or 2.5 cm/1 in slice fresh turmeric


Remove all skin and any remaining bones from fish fillets. Cut into thin slices and put into a glass or pottery bowl. Pour lime or lemon juice over, add sliced shallots and salt and mix with a wooden spoon. Cover and leave to marinate for 6 hours in the refrigerator, stirring 2 or 3 times with a non-metallic spoon.

Shortly before serving drain away the lemon juice. Combine dressing ingredients. If using fresh turmeric, pound to a paste and mix with some of the coconut cream. Pour over fish and diced vegetables and mix gently. Arrange leaves on serving plate and pile fish salad in the centre. Serve chilled.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)

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In repy to Margaret, this may be the recipe you are looking for - quick & easy.

2lb Raw (white) fish
3/4 Lemons Dice fish & soak in juice overnight.
Pour off any excess juice, then add
1/2 cup chopped Spring Onion
1/2 " " Cucumber
1/2 " " Tomatoes
Tin of Coconut Milk
Salt & Pepper
Serve on lettuce leaves

I remember a Raw Fish recipe that my late father in law used to make for special occasions that was really lovely. A nieces husband also made a nice version but they both seemed different to this one. I dont remember cucumber or capsicum in either. The ones I remember were basicly the fish cut into bite sized pieces, marinaded in lime juice with finely sliced onion and then the juice poured off and coconut cream mixed through. Simple but very nice. If they had turmeric or ginger it certainly did'nt overpower the fresh fish, tangy lime and coconut cream flavour or texture. I'd appreciate any tips about this really lovely dish as I would like to make it for a special occasion myself.