Fish Like My Mom Would Make It

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This fish is an variation on my mom’s classic Chinese steamed whole fish.  It was updated to incorporate some ingredients I was experimenting with and I was brave enough to try it out on my mom and family…pretty high bar!


Seconds and thirds were had so I’d say it was a success! Serve with jasmine rice or another small grain to catch all the juices!


Mom’s Fish

Soy Sauce Glaze

  • 4 Tbsp kecap manis or soy sauce + 2 tsp sugar
  • 4 Tbsp rice wine
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves, bruised
  • 1 x 2-inch piece ginger, smashed

Place all ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and strain. Reserve for later.

Infused Oil

  • 3 Tbsp grape seed oil
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp grated ginger
  • 2 large cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 red chili, thinly sliced
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp pink peppercorns, crushed

While fish is cooking, heat oil in a small saucepan. Once very hot, add all the infusion ingredient and remove from heat only once the garlic just begins to show signs of color.


  • 4 firm whitefish fillets, cleaned and patted dry, tilapia and sole work well
  • 1/2 Salt
  • Oil to coat
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • Handful of cilantro leaves for garnish

Preheat your broiler. Rub the fish with oil, season with salt and place on a foil lined tray on a single layer. Broil in oven for 6-8 minutes until fish just flakes.

Plate fish on warmed platters and include any accumulated juices. Drizzle fish with soy glaze, top with infused oil, fried infused bits and garnish with cilantro and green onions.


Serves 4

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