I’ve always loved fish. We ate it regularly when I was growing up and I could never understand why so many of my friends didn’t like it. I don’t want Sonny to be one of those kids that grows up hating fish, so I try to make it at least once a week.
Tonight I threw together this Chinese-style fish in 30 minutes. I used orange roughy, but any other firm white fish, such as cod, will do. You could also bake or steam the fish, if you prefer. Just omit the flour.
White fish with chili black bean sauce
Rub lime juice on the fish and let it sit for a couple of minutes. Pat dry and dust with flour. Pan fry in a skillet over medium-high heat. You only have to use enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. When done, put it to the side and keep it warm.
- 1 pound white fish
- 1 tbs lime juice
- flour for dusting
- 1/2 to 1 tbs grated ginger
- 2 bunches scallions, greens and whites separated, finely sliced on the diagonal
- 1 tbs Chinese chili black bean paste
- 1 tbs black soy sauce
- 1 tbs Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
- ½ to 1 tsp sugar, depending on taste
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- ¼ to 1/3 cup water to de-glaze
While the fish is cooking, combine the chili black bean paste, soy sauce, rice wine, sugar and sesame oil in a small bowl. Whisk well to dissolve the sugar.
In a wok over high heat, add a tablespoon or two of oil. Fry the ginger for about 20 seconds, until it’s fragrant and browning a little (don’t let it burn!). Add the whites of the green onions and stir-fry for about a minute or two. Don’t over-stir them; give them a few seconds to brown between stirs. Add the sauce mix. It should caramelize and get a little thicker quite quickly. Add the remaining green onions and ¼ to 1/3 cup of water to deglaze the wok (drizzle the water down the sides of the wok). Quickly check the seasonings, and if you’re happy, spoon the sauce over the fish. Serve immediately with steamed white rice.