Saturday, May 8, 2010
Cantonese style steamed fish 粵式蒸魚
In my humble opinion there is no better way of cooking fish than simply steaming it the Cantonese way. It is very tempting to order a steamed fish when we are dining out at a Chinese restaurant but at $18/lb (roughly $40 for a 1.2kg barramundi) that is more than what we are willing to pay for just one dish. Although the urge of turning some fresh flathead fillets I bought into a sinful plate of sweet and sour fish was scarily strong, I opted for the more sensible idea of Cantonese steamed fish instead. It was a good move indeed; the dish turned out to be a crowd pleaser, not to mentioned how much time was saved from cleaning a greasy kitchen afterwards. This is a very delicate dish, just make sure nothing curried is served alongside it!
P.S Use whole snapper, bream or barramundi, just adjust the cooking time accordingly.
serves 4 as part of a Chinese meal
500 g of flathead fillet
5 cm knob of ginger, julienne
2 spring onions, julienne
1 red chili, julienne
2 stalks of coriander, roughly chopped
1/2 cup of Chinese coking wine
1/2 cup of light soy
dash of sesame oil
1/4 cup of cooking oil
*ginger and Chinese cooking wine is often use with seafood to rid the finished dish of any fishiness. Don't be alarmed by the amount of cooking wine, the alcohol will be cooked off during the steaming process.
Prepare the toppings and set aside.
Place fish in a shallow bowl that will fit inside your wok (place a metal rack in the wok). Pour cooking wine, soy and a dash of sesame oil over. Top with julienne ginger and julienne spring onion (white part only).
Pour hot water into the wok, cover and steam on high heat for 10 minutes. If using thicker fillets or whole fish adjust the time accordingly.
Place prepared toppings over the fish. Meanwhile heat up the cooking oil til smoking, chopped garlic can be added depending on your preference.
Pour hot oil over the dish, this will partially scald the toppings and form a very delicious "sauce" with the steaming liquor.
Serve immediately as part of a Chinese meal. One can really taste the sweetness of the fish and the "sauce" together with the toppings are perfect with bowls of waiting steamed rice!