Caramelised fish in young coconut juice

Caramelised fish in young coconut juice

By
From
Luke Nguyen's Greater Mekong
Serves
4
Photographer
Stuart Scott

Basa is a type of catfish that is not too popular outside of Vietnam, as it comes frozen all the way from the Mekong Delta and it is really affordable — so it’s perceived as being a cheaper, inferior fish. With this in mind, I travelled to Chau Doc to sample the fish fresh and judge for myself. A local fish farm kindly gave me one to cook up, and I was pleasantly surprised: I caramelised the basa with pork and coconut juice and it came out wonderfully. It had very few bones and its white ƒfresh had a light, firm texture that stayed very moist once cooked. If you can’t get fresh basa, use fresh silver perch or cod instead.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
500g basa, silver perch or cod cutlets
60ml vegetable oil
2 tablespoons shaved palm sugar
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
200g boneless pork belly, finely sliced
200ml young coconut juice
4 spring onions, julienned, white part only
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 red chilli, sliced

Marinade

Quantity Ingredient
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 red asian shallot, diced
1 tablespoon shaved palm sugar
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons oyster sauce

Method

  1. Combine the marinade ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix well. Add the fish and turn to coat in the marinade, then cover and marinate for 10 minutes. Drain off and reserve the marinade.
  2. Place a wok or frying pan over low heat. Add the vegetable oil and palm sugar and cook until the sugar has caramelised, stirring slightly.
  3. Add the garlic and pork belly and stir-fry for 15 seconds, then immediately add the marinated fish.
  4. Coat the fish with the caramel, then add the reserved marinade and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Stir in the coconut juice and simmer for a further 6 minutes, skimming off any impurities that rise to the surface.
  6. Serve sprinkled with the spring onion, pepper and chilli.
Tags:
Greater
Mekong
Luke
Nguyen
Red
Lantern
Vietnam
Vietnamese
Asian
Asia
South
East
Southeast
South-east
SBS
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