If you’re like me, and you like fish, you’ve probably had a dish like this many times before at an Asian restaurant (Thai, Malaysian or Chinese), where they serve the whole fish (with head and tail intact), usually fried, and then covered in a delicious sauce. Well, here, I present to you the simple and healthy version–a whole steamed fish covered in soy sauce and topped with tasty garnishes. There is very little prep involved and so few ingredients, that this is going to be my goto fish dish from now on.
Steaming is a great way to cook food without fat, and if you buy a small metal rack, you can turn your wok into a steamer very easily. It’s also a very quick way to cook, and you will know that your fish is ready when it’s eye pops out in about 7-8 minutes. Using aromatics is a must when steaming, to impart a subtle flavor into whatever you are cooking. In this particular recipe, the addition of the tangerine peel makes for a nice, citrusy-fresh flavor.
Meanwhile, you make the sauce in another pan by combining the soy sauces (light and dark), rice wine, sugar and sesame oil. Dark soy sauce, which may be purchased at an Asian store, is a little thicker and sweeter than regular soy, and by adding a little sugar, you get that sweet/savory taste that is common in Asian cooking.
My favorite part of this dish, however, has got to be the garnishes. Fresh herbs like cilantro leaves add a lot of flavor as well as making the dish aesthetically pleasing. I added some fresh chopped green chilies for a little heat.
For overall taste, ease of preparation and health, you cannot go wrong with this dish. Try it now at home!
1 whole fish (snapper), about 1 lb.
3 spring onions, cut into thirds
3 slices ginger root
1 small piece tangerine peel, cut into matchsticks
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon rice wine
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon sesame oil
4 spring onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon ginger, cut into matchsticks
1 sprig fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
4 green chilies, sliced (optional)
1.) Gut and clean fish under running water. Remove and dry thoroughly.
2.) Half-fill a wok with water and bring to boil. Place a steaming rack in the wok.
Arrange the halved stalks of spring onion, ginger slices and tangerine peel slices on a plate and place the fish on top. Place it on the steaming rack, cover and steam over high heat for 7-8 minutes or until fish is cooked.
3.) Transfer the fish onto a hot greased serving platter, and discard everything else.
4.) Meanwhile, to make the sauce for the fish, heat oil is a small saucepan. Carefully pour in the Sauce ingredients and bring to a boil. Pour the sauce over the fish and garnish with ginger, spring onions and coriander. Serve immediately with steamed rice.