An idyllic life for me and my family would probably be living near the sea. We just love fish and all types of seafood. It is not easy to access fresh fish in London but we are lucky enough to have a few good sources in our area. We eat fish as much as we can, usually at lunch time and always with rice. That, for us, is the perfect combination.
I found some big halibut steaks at the market. I prefer to fry firm fleshed fish like this. I served it with a sauce that is sweet, sour, salty, and spicy. These are all the requisitions to change the flavour of fish from good to great. This is far from the classic Chinese sweet and sour fish. Aside from the spicy kick from the chilli, the sauce gets its spike of taste from coriander leaves and toasted garlic. I have used halibut steaks but any white fish steaks, cutlets or fillets can be used for this recipe.
This is a dish for sharing. A few dishes are usually served at meal times and everyone helps themselves to the food. This can serve four people or six if served with other dishes.
2 halibut steaks or any white fish cutlets, fillets or whole fish can be substituted
1 1/2 tsps. sea salt
corn flour for dredging
cooking oil for frying
1 1/2 tbsps. cooking oil
4 cloves of garlic, chopped or minced
1/2 finger chilli, sliced diagonally
2 bunches of spring onions, cut diagonally, about 1/3 c.
1/4 c. brown sugar
juice and rind of 1 lime
1 tbsp. chopped coriander leaves
3/4 c. water
1 tsp. corn flour dispersed in 1 tbsp. water
Season the fish with 1 1/2 tsps. of sea salt. Coat with corn flour and pan fry until crisped and golden brown. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Heat up a wok or sauce pan and fry the garlic in 1 1/2 tbsps of oil. Fry on low heat until light brown and crisp. This must be done slowly and on low heat so the garlic doesn't burn and get bitter. Skim off the bits of garlic and set aside.
To the same pan, add the chilli, spring onions and sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves. Add the lime rind, juice and water. Bring to a boil. Thicken with the corn flour slurry. Add the chopped coriander and the fish and simmer just for 1 minute to coat the fish with the sauce. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with the fried garlic.
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