This is a traditional way of cooking fish in banana leaves. Outside of Africa and South-East Asia you may be able to get frozen banana leaves in Asian, International or African stores. As a substitute you could use dock leaves. The flavour they provide will be different, but the cooking method will be the same.
- Banana leaves, dock leaves or greaseproof paper
- 1.2kg fresh fish (tilapia preferrably) cut into fillets, steaks or pieces
- 2 onions, finely chopped
- juice of 2 lemons
- salt and black pepper and cayenne pepper to taste
- 1 ripe tomato, chopped and crushed
- 6 okra, chopped
- bunch of sorrel leaves
- 1 crushed Maggi cube (or a fish stock cube with 1/2 tsp cumin and 1/2 tsp coriander)
- Mix together the oil, chopped onion, lemon juice, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper to form the marinade. Add the okra and chopped sorrel along with the Maggi cube to this then place the fish in the marinade and allow to marinate for 20 minutes
- Blanch the banana leaves in boiling water to make them supple, remove the mid-rib and trim the ends to give you rectangles. Place the fish in the centre of the banana leaf and fold over the sides. Now fold the ends around the fish so that you have a packet about two to three banana folds thick. Place on a barbecue or in an oven pre-heated to 180°C and cook for 40 minutes, turning every ten minutes.
- Serve in the banana leaf packet accompanied by Baton de Manioc or FuFu.