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Kitchen Garden Journal

Chinese Fish with Ginger-Scallion Sauce

  • 4 Tilapia fillets
  • Flour for dusting
  • 6 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1-3 small hot chilies, sliced
  • 1 inch ginger root
  • 2-3 scallions, in 1-inch pieces
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp white or rice vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp chopped cilantro 

This dish is prepared using a method commonly used in Chinese cooking. Heat the oil in a fairly large skillet. Cut the fish fillets into 1 inch chunks. Put some flour on a small plate or saucer and roll the fish pieces in it before adding them to the hot oil. Fry briefly (only a minute or two per side) as the fish cooks fast and you don’t want it to crumble. Drain the fried fish on paper towels and set aside. Drain all but 2 Tbsp of the oil out of the pan. Meanwhile, cut the ginger root into matchsticks by slicing it very thinly and then chopping the slices into narrow slivers. Add garlic, ginger, chilies, and scallions to the oil. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent sticking or burning. Combine the sauce ingredients and add to the pan, stir once, then return the fish to the pan, stirring gently to coat with the sauce, about 1 minute. Turn off heat and garnish with the cilantro. Serve immediately with rice. 

Note: this dish can be made with any kind of meat, tofu or eggplant, but fish is good luck in China.

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