3 easy recipes for marinated fish just in time for Good Friday

Marinated fish is a tradition in Cape Town around Good Friday and Easter, and if you travel the streets there’s always an aromatic cloud of curry flavors hanging in the air.

Pickled fish is also known as curried fish (kerrievis) here in South Africa and it is not pickled like herring or rollmops for example.

It is a curry dish with rich flavors of turmeric, masala, ginger, coriander and above all a sweet and sour vinegar flavor. Some of the pickled fish eaters even have their own secret fish masala recipe and will literally go to their grave with the recipe.

Apparently, this Easter tradition was brought to the Eastern Cape during the time of the slave trade.

Below are three quick and easy to try marinated fish recipes.

Marinated Cape sea bream


1kg Cape sea bream, cut into portions

350g sugar

500 ml of white vinegar

5 ml whole cumin

5 ml coriander seeds, toasted and crushed

10 ml of fish spice

3 bay leaves

5 ml of turmeric

5 ml mild curry powder

3 x garlic cloves, crushed

5 ml grated ginger

3 x chopped onions

10 ml of corn flour

2 tablespoons of sunflower oil for frying

Flour, for sprinkling

Salt and black pepper


In a skillet over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon of oil and gently sauté the onion until translucent.

Add the ginger, garlic and spices and sauté gently for a few minutes, until fragrant.

Add vinegar and sugar and stir until sugar is dissolved, simmer for 20 minutes.

Thicken with cornstarch until you get a nice coating consistency and season to taste.

Sprinkle the fish with seasoned flour and sponge off the excess.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and, when hot, fry the fish until golden brown.

Place a layer of fish in a deep sterile glass or non-metallic container and pour some hot sauce over it to cover. Continue to layer the fish and the sauce until all the fish are covered. Let cool, then refrigerate until ready to serve.

Note: it is best to prepare it at least 24 hours in advance and to accompany it with one or two glasses of Steenberg Sémillon.

Recipe from Steenberg Executive Chef Kerry Kilpin.

Marinated fish tacos


6-8 Old El Paso hard taco shells or soft tacos

125ml Old El Paso Ready-to-Use Salsa Chunks

1 jar of marinated fish

250g grated white cabbage

15 ml large chilli flakes

30g grated cheddar

3-4 limes, cut into wedges

For the guacamole:

2 ripe avocados

A dash of lemon juice

Salt and pepper, to season

For the fresh salsa:

2 tomatoes, diced

½ onion, finely chopped

20 ml chopped cilantro


For the guacamole:

Mash the avocados with a fork. Squeeze the lemon juice over it and season to taste.

For the fresh salsa:

mix all the ingredients together.

To assemble:

Preheat the oven to 180 ° C. Heat the tacos for about 2-3 minutes.

Place the taco shells on a plate, fill them with cabbage, Old El Paso Chunky Tomato Salsa, fresh guacamole and marinated fish. Top with cheddar cheese and fresh tomato salsa. Serve and enjoy!

Tip: For extra creaminess, mix whole yogurt with finely chopped cucumber and torn mint and serve with the tacos.

Food Lovers Market recipe.

Last minute marinated fish


2 kg yellowtail flounder, cut into pieces

Sunflower oil

6 onions

5 cloves

6 cloves of garlic

1 cup of vinegar

1 tablespoon of brown sugar

4 tablespoons of Cartwright curry powder (medium)

2 teaspoons of borrie (turmeric)

Salt to taste

6 bay leaves


Wash the fish and pat dry.

Season the fish and fry in sunflower oil until golden brown.

Place on a paper towel to drain the oil.

Cut the onions into rings and brown them in a little oil.

Add the rest of the ingredients (except the bay leaves) to the pot.

When the mixture boils, remove it from the heat and pour it over the fish.

Add the bay leaves, cover the dish and let stand for a few days.

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