Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Steamed Rockling With Hot And Spicy Bean Sauce 香辣豆醬蒸魚

Missing home and craving for something from my childhood, the solution - to cook one of my favourite childhood dishes. Despite being up in the hills (Cameron Highlands) away from the sea, we actually had fish on the table almost daily. Be it fresh water fish caught locally in the lakes or fresh seafood transported daily from the lowlands. I remember this being one of the favourite dishes of all the children in the household, I think it has got to do with the delicious and very addictive sauce! Do use a whole fish (bream, seabass, barramundi, snapper) or even try it with scallops. 
P.S This is for my dear friend Makcikmanggis at jom masak, jom makan makan who is constantly looking for new recipes to cook for her family. I think this will be very popular with her family especially Pakcik. Selamat mencuba makcik!

serves 4 as part of a Chinese meal
you'll need;
600 g of rockling or other white fish
2 spring onions, julienne
1 red chili, sliced
1/2 cup of coriander leaves

for the sauce;
3 garlic cloves, chopped
4 bird chilies, chopped*
1 long green chili, chopped
5 cm knob of ginger, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
4 tbs of soya bean paste (豆辨醬)
2 tbs of oyster sauce
2 tbs of light soy
2 tbs of sugar
1/3 cup of stock
dash of white pepper
dash of Chinese cooking wine (optional)
* adjust to your taste accordingly

Chop the aromatics for the sauce.

Fry chopped ingredients with some peanut oil for a minute then all in the bean paste and continue to cook for another minute.

Add in the rest of the ingredients and cook til a little syrupy. Don't worry if the sauce taste a little to salty as it will be watered down during the steaming process.

Prepare the toppings and allow the sauce to cool a little.

Place fish in a shallow bowl that would fit in your wok or steamer. Pour the sauce over with half the julienne spring onions and steam on high heat for 8 to 10 minutes. Check after 8 minutes to check for doneness.

Add the rest of the toppings and serve it immediately as part of a Chinese meal, make sure you cook plenty of steamed rice for this dish.


  1. I can have extra bowl of rice just looking at the sauce alone. Childhood dishes are the best cure for homesickness indeed!

  2. I have yet to try steaming fish...This looks so delicious!

  3. wowwww....pagi2 lagi u dah wat perot ai lapo la tummy! sos tuh fullamakkk! meleleh air liur! nanti nak cuba.. thanx for sharing!

    >> ur eggplant mmg mabelessss!! thank u!

  4. 好開胃呀!白飯一定要煮多一些!

  5. WOW...thats such a delicious looking meal...made me hungry...yum!

  6. Harriet from CarltonMay 26, 2010 at 12:53 PM

    I like steamed fish and this is quite different from the Cantonese style that I like, it looks very tasty!

  7. That is an attractive dish and I am trying to imagine the aroma and flavor of the sauce!

  8. wahhhh... sedappnyer... steam lagi.. makanan sehat gitu... i like.... :D

  9. you have the sauciest and lovelist aromas in food dom...obviously dying to give this a try!

  10. KL girl in MELB,
    Yes you will need that! I can't agree more!

    Bo ,
    It is the best way to cook fish :)

    Terima kasih banyak-banyak ni :)
    Saya berasa gembira kerana kamu suka hasilnya :)


    Thank you very much! :)

    Harriet ,
    Thank you! You must try this too!

    darren ,
    Thank you! Do cook it so you won't have to imagine!

    JaSSNaNi ,
    Hehe terima kasih! Memang sihat and sedap :)

    Jhonny walker,
    Oh Thank you very much! You just put a big smile on my face :)

    Thank you! :)

  11. I love to be surprised and I get that every time I am here! What a delicious looking dish, I can understand why you cooked this when you are homesick!

  12. selamat sejahtera Tummy...ohh terharunya sebab resepi diatas ditujukan buat kami berdua..terima kasih my dear tummy.Kebetulan pakcik sangat sukakan masakan berasaskan ikan jadi makcik akan cuba resepi ini dalam masa terdekat...gambar ke3 dari atas tu sungguh menarik sekali:)

  13. Oh that looks good and very little cooking too, my kind of food!

  14. Wow, that sauce is to die for! YOu have alot of yummy home cooking here. Shall be back for more...

  15. Sure will do with an extra helping of rice. This way of steaming fish is quite popular when we eat out.

  16. Wat a comforting bowl..would love to have some..

  17. Oh my..I love that sauce! I can eat just this with rice!

  18. rosa,
    Thank you very much! :)

    Terima kasih makcik! Saya tahu pakcik suka makanan yang tidak pedas and yang dikukus jadi ini pasti sesuai :)

    Thank you! Please try it!

    Thank you very much! Please do!

    Cheah ,
    Haha yes that is a must! Oh really this is such a common home cooked dish for us :)

    Priya ,
    Haha thank you!

    Thank you! Yes and plenty of it!!!

  19. This looks absolutely delicious. I love the sauce. Would be so awesome with rice.

  20. I normally order the Cantonese style but this looks really delicious!

  21. The boys are going to love this. The sauce looks absolutely delicious!

  22. yesterday I also cook the similar fish, yours look really good especially the sauce.

  23. The sauce looks so good! Must copy for my steam fish.

  24. Hey buddy I wish I have a dish that I can cook when I am homesick too. It looks really delicious!

  25. You grew up on fish and I grew up on pasta. Therein lies my weight gain! This does look scrumptious - very hard to get whole fish here (necessitates a trip to Minneapolis - across the Mississippi) and very expensive. The sauce is so welcoming and beautiful - maybemake do with fillets.

  26. Yum- I love steaming tillapia- not quite mastered the whole fish bit.

  27. Sighhhh ... wow. What can I say? So good, so good. The sauce must taste unbelievable with all those 'aromatics' which you so aptly called them. Brilliantly prepared, Suresh. Just brilliant.

  28. Jagruti,
    Thank you very much!

    Thank you! It was good, I had 3 bowls of rice!

    Anu ,
    Thank you! Try this soon.

    love to eat ,
    Thank you! You are so lucky they eat almost everything!

    Sonia ,
    Thank you! Looking forward to your version :)

    penny ,
    Thank you and please do!

    fitzboy ,
    Thanks buddy! Meat and 3 veg perhaps? lol

    Claudia ,
    Haha and plenty of rice too, just as bad as pasta :) Fillet is great with this dish!

    Lady Ren,
    The fresh water fish I grew up eating was tilapia!

    Ju ,
    Oh Ju thank you very much! Not sure about brilliant but It sure tastes of childhood :)

  29. Wow this looks so delicious and colourful...

  30. This really looks delicious. It's always so nice to revisit childhood through food. We all carry those memories. I love that you share yours with us. I hope you are having a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

  31. The spicy bean sauce sounds excellent with white fish!

  32. la sauce épicée doit être vraiment divine
    je note
    bonne journée

  33. Mmm that is my kind of food... Looks so yummy!

  34. I love spicy. One way to prepare fish very rich.

  35. hi sweetie, this looks great! love the new colour scheme. call me. xx

  36. Steaming fish is my fave. And I also love spicy!
    You're the best coo around!
    B xx

  37. Priti ,
    Thank you!

    Mary ,
    Thank you! It is wonderful to have that indeed!

    Thank you very much!

    5 Star Foodie ,
    Thank you very much! It is great with tilapia too!

    merci beaucoup

    Sook ,
    Thank you very much!

    Thank you very much!

    Adrienne ,
    Thanks darling and thank you for your quick visit! xxx

    Oh thank you very much!!! xxx

  38. By looking at this dish, I can already tell it is very very delicious! I love the combination of all flavours.

  39. Hi when u mean soya bean paste is this fermented bean paste aka taucheo? Its not chili bean sauce right?

  40. mycookinghut,
    Thank you very much! :)

    It is taucheo indeed.

  41. Thanks...going to make this tonight...Sounds really fab will let u know how it turns out.

  42. Oh do let me know how it turns out!

  43. The fish turned out really well...I added an extra tablespoon of chili bean paste to the sauce for the extra heat and included more garlic cloves, ginger and shallots. After steaming, I poured about 2 tablespoons of hot garlic and shallot oil on the fish just for the extra sizzle and garnished with fried shallots and garlic. I kept to the entire recipe with a few tweaks and modifications but altogether my entire family was really pleased with the dish...I used catfish and the tender, silky, succulent flesh went extremely well with the sauce which was lapped up with steaming white rice. Thanks a lot for this recipe and I will definitely be making it again!

  44. look so delicious.. i'll try it.. thanks a lot for sharing the resepi..

  45. I bet it would be delicious to eat. Wish you happy dinner, I would be happy to see you make vegetarian dishes.Make friends with me.

  46. Món ăn của bạn làm tôi nhớ lại cảnh mùa hè thật sôi động. Lúc đó tôi rất vui vì có bạn bè đầy đủ. Cảm ơn bạn. Nếu bạn muốn biết về đất nước của tôi và các món ăn, hãy vào :


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