Renuka’s Fine Dining Meal



Starter: Chilli Crab cakes with Lime Aioli, sesame seed crackers
Mains: Pan Fried Spiced Fish served with a spicy turmeric coconut sauce, Braised Basmati Rice, Naan bread 
Dessert: Semolina, cardamom and coconut cake, Coconut ice cream, Pistachio crumble, Mascarpone cream


Chilli Crab:

150 grams crab meat
¼ cup shallots finely sliced (can add more)
2 teaspoons fresh chilli finely chopped (can use red or green, adjust as per your level of heat)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (from a jar)
¾ cup panko breadcrumbs
1 egg white
Juice of x 1 lime
1 teaspoon cumin powder
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ cup freshly chopped coriander

Starter: Crab Cakes

  1. In a bowl combine crabmeat, shallots, chillies, Dijon mustard, spices, breadcrumbs, egg white, and 1 Tablespoon of lime juice. Season with salt and pepper. Add fresh chopped coriander. If the mix is too wet, add a little more breadcrumb. Mixture should bind together. 
  2. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and place in the fridge for 30 minutes. 
  3. Once refrigerate, shape into 8 small rounds. Flatten slightly with your fingers. You still want the crab cakes to be about 2 cm thick.
  4. Place a nonstick pan on medium heat. Add oil. The crab cakes need to be fried in shallow oil.
  5. Once oil is hot, place crab cakes in and fry for 2 – 3 minutes on each side ensuring that they are nicely brown. Remove and place on paper towel to drain any excess oil.

Starter: Lime Aioli

2 Egg Yolks
2 Garlic cloves minced or grated
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard from a jar
1 lime (zest and juice)
1 cup cooking oil
Black Pepper
2 Tablespoons of Chives (finely chopped)

Starter: Lime Aioli

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor except the oil
  2. Blitz until well incorporated
  3. Very slowly with the processor motor running, add oil in a steady stream
  4. Once the aioli is starting to look creamy add oil a little faster.
  5. The aioli will now be creamy and thick once all the oil has been added.
  6. Taste and adjust seasoning to one’s preference.
  7. You can add more finely minced garlic and chopped chives


Starter: Sesame Cracker

1 cup flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon dried rosemary
2 Tablespoons oil
¼ cup warm water
¼ teaspoon Royal Baking Powder
Black sesame seeds

Starter: Sesame cracker

  1. In a bowl combine all ingredients except the water and sesame seeds
  2. Add water slowly, until dough comes together. The dough should be soft and elastic.
  3. Cover dough with clingfilm and leave to rest for 15 minutes
  4. Once rested, remove clingfilm, flour work surface
  5. Roll out the dough into 2 mm thickness. You want thin crackers
  6. Sprinkle over sesame seeds
  7. Use a rolling pin to gently roll over the sesame seeds so that they stick to the dough. 
  8. Sprinkle over flaky sea salt
  9. Cut into small squares or triangles with a sharp knife 
  10. Place on non stick baking sheet that has baking paper on . Prick squares with a fork
  11. Preheat oven to 180 degree Celsius
  12. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until golden and crispy

To serve the starter, place a little aioli on a plate in small circles, then add a crab cake, place sesame crackers along the crab cakes garnish with micro herbs and a wedge of lime. 



Pan Fried Spiced Fish

White fish filleted (quantity as per your preference. I used 1 chunky fillet)
1 teaspoon Cumin Powder
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt to taste
Black pepper
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon garum masala
Juice of ½ lemon
½ cup Clover Butter to fry the fish

Main: Pan Fried Spiced Fish

  1. Cut fish into 4 cm chunks (if you prefer to fry the fillet whole, then do so)
  2. In a bowl, add fish chunks as well as all the other ingredients.
  3. Mix gently to combine, trying not to break the fish chunks
  4. Leave aside to marinate in the spices for 5 minutes
  5. After 5 minutes, place a non-stick frying pan on moderate heat
  6. Place ½ cup salted butter in the pan, butter should be hot
  7. Add fish chunks to the butter. Turn after 2 minutes and ensure fish is cooked through. Don’t overcook fish
  8. Remove and plate in a plate until ready to plate

Main: Spicy Turmeric coconut sauce

2 Tablespoons Butter ghee or cooking oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 shallot chopped
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 teaspoon crushed ginger
1 Tablespoon fish sauce
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
5 to 6 curry leaves
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 to 2 fresh green or red chillies finely chopped
½ teaspoon dried chilli flakes
1 can coconut milk 
Handful of chopped coriander

Main: Spicy Turmeric coconut sauce

  1. In a pan , dry roast the cumin, coriander and fennel seeds.
  2. Remove from heat, use a pestle and mortar and grind to a fine powder. Set aside.
  3. In a deep saucepan or frying pan, add ghee or oil
  4. Add curry leaves and let it splutter.
  5. Add shallot and fry until soft and translucent.
  6. Add spices, chilli flakes, ginger, garlic, turmeric, fresh chillies
  7. Sauté for a minute or two, then add the coconut milk, lemon juice and fish sauce.
  8. Season with salt.
  9. Let the mix boil and reduce (about 3 minutes)
  10. Add chopped coriander and turn off the heat.

Main: Braised Basmati Rice

½ cup basmati rice
1 big cinnamon stick
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
5 curry leaves
1 medium white onion finely chopped
1 teaspoon spice for rice or any rice seasoning 
2 tablespoons butter ghee

Main: Braised Basmati Rice

  1. Soak rice in a dish with 3 cups of water for 10 minutes
  2. Discard water from rice and add another 2 cups water, wash rice with hands to remove some of the starch
  3. Discard second lot of water
  4. Place rice in a saucepan, fill about 2.5 cups of tap water
  5. Place on high heat
  6. Add salt and cinnamon stick to saucepan
  7. Boil rice until soft but not mushy
  8. Test the doneness of rice by pressing a grain of rice between thumb and index finger. The rice should be soft
  9. Switch of the heat, strain rice in colander until all the water has drained
  10. In a saucepan, add butter ghee and mustard seeds. Allow seed to splutter
  11. Add curry leaves and onion and fry until translucent
  12. Add spice for rice. Mix
  13. Empty cooked rice into the above mixture and turn of heat
  14. Ensure that all the grains of rice are coated in the butter ghee and spice mix.

Main: Naan Bread

1 cup flour
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon Royal Baking Powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon oil
2 tablespoons plain yoghurt
1 teaspoon grated garlic
Water for kneading

To brush the Naan Bread

Garlic butter to brush (melted butter which has grated garlic in and ½ teaspoon dried mixed herbs)

Main: Naan Bread

  1. Preheat oven to 180-degree Celsius
  2. In a bowl add all the dry ingredients. Mix to combine
  3. Add oil, yoghurt and garlic
  4. Mix until all ingredients are incorporated
  5. Slowly add tap water until a soft dough forms
  6. Knead until smooth.
  7. Make a ball, cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes
  8. Once rested, divide dough into small balls(depending on the size you want to make)
  9. Roll each naan into a circle or oval
  10. Place naan on baking sheet and place in oven for 6 to 8 minutes
  11. Naan will puff up and become golden in colour
  12. Remove from oven and immediately brush with garlic butter

To serve the main, add a bowl of rice in the middle of the serving plate, place chunks of fish around the rice, top rice with naan and lastly pour coconut sauce around the rice. Garnish with coriander!


Coconut Ice-cream

1 cup cold fresh Clover cream
185 grams coconut cream
200 grams condensed milk
½ to 1 teaspoon coconut extract (use as per your taste)
Pinch of salt
Toasted coconut flakes for topping the ice cream

Dessert: Coconut Ice-cream

  1. In a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, add fresh cream and whip until stiff peaks form
  2. Add in the coconut milk, condensed milk, coconut extract and salt.
  3. Whisk until smooth and well incorporated.
  4. Place mixture in a flat freezer safe container, smooth the top and scatter over toasted coconut flakes. Cover with lid or clingfilm
  5. Place in blast chiller or in freezer to set 

Dessert: Semolina, cardamom and coconut cake

1 cup Clover milk
125 grams butter (salted)
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon  castor  sugar 
½ cup flour
½ cup semolina
1 teaspoon Royal Baking Powder
½ cup desiccated coconut
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon cardamom powder

Dessert: Semolina, cardamom and coconut cake

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
  2. Line and spray a square tin 
  3. In a saucepan heat butter and milk. Don’t boil. Remove when small bubbles appear on the surface of the milk mixture
  4. Set aside to cool for a few minutes
  5. In a stand mixer or bowl, sift the flour, sugar, semolina, baking powder, coconut and cardamom powder, pinch of salt
  6. Add eggs and vanilla essence to cooled milk mixture
  7. Add wet ingredients into dry ingredients
  8. Mix to combine
  9. Pour into prepared baking tin and bake for 25 minutes until cake is brown and the centre is cooked
  10. Remove from oven and leave to cool for 5 minutes
  11. Turn out onto a serving plate
  12. Make small holes in cake with a skewer

Dessert: Cardamom syrup for cake

1 cup water
½ cup sugar
8 green cardamom pods (crushed slightly to expose seeds)
Pinch of salt

Dessert: Cardamom syrup for cake

  1. In a saucepan, add water and sugar
  2. Turn on the heat to medium
  3. Mix together and allow sugar to dissolve
  4. Add crushed cardamom pods, salt
  5. Allow to boil.
  6. Once boiled, remove from heat
  7. Use a tea strainer to pour the syrup over the cake
  8. Use all the syrup over the cake

Dessert: Pistachio Crumble

¼ cup pistachio nuts shelled and roughly chopped
¼ cup flour
¼ cup almond flour
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons melted salted Clover butter 

Dessert: Pistachio Crumble

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degree celcius
  2. In a food processor all all ingredients except the pistachio and butter
  3. Pulse until well combined
  4. Add pistachio and pulse 3 times
  5. Add melted butter
  6. Pulse again until everything is incorporated
  7. Spread onto a lined baking sheet 
  8. Ensure that the crumb mixture is evenly distributed
  9. Bake for 10 minutes
  10. Remove from oven and use a spoon to mix crumble
  11. Place in oven again and bake for another 5 minutes
  12. Once baked, remove from oven and break up crumble with fingers or a fork
  13. Leave to cool


Dessert: Mascarpone Cream

100 grams plain yoghurt
100 grams mascarpone or crème fraiche
1 to 2 tablespoons icing sugar
Lemon juice

Dessert: Mascarpone Cream

  1. In a bowl add yoghurt, mascarpone or crème fraiche, icing sugar 
  2. Whisk above ingredients together until fluffy
  3. Add lemon juice (1 teaspoon at a time)
  4. Whisk again
  5. Taste and adjust icing sugar or lemon juice
  6. It should taste creamy, slightly sweet and tart

To serve the dessert, place bite size cake squares on a plate, pipe the tops of the cake with the mascarpone cream, place pistachio crumble on plate. Serve with coconut ice cream and more toasted coconut flakes and micro herbs