Deep-fried River Fish with Chilli Bean Sauce RecipeServes: 4–6
Ingredients:1 whole freshwater fish (eg trout, carp, tilapia), about 400g (15 oz), gutted and scaled
1 tbps (heaped) plain flour
pinch of salt
100ml (2/5 cup) water
groundnut oil for deep frying
For the Sauce:
1 tbsp dried chilli flakes
100ml (2/5 cup) groundnut oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 tbsp chilli bean sauce
1/2 tsp whole black peppercorns
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp white rice vinegar
1 tsp spring onions, finely chopped
Method:Clean and dry the fish thoroughly then mix together the salt and water to form a light batter. Dip the fish in the batter to coat evenly.
Heat sufficient oil in a wok to immerse the fish (or use a deep fryer). Bring the oil to about 180ºC (360ºF) [when a cube of bread browns in 30 seconds when immersed in the oil]. Deep fry the fish until the skin is crisp and golden brown then drain and set aside to keep warm.
For the sauce, add the dried chilli flakes in a heatproof dish. Add 1 tbsp groundnut oil to a small saucepan and when smoking pour over the chilli flakes then set aside.
In a pre-heated wok, add the remaining 95ml oil and use to stir-fry the garlic and ginger for about 30 seconds, or until fragrant. Stir in the chilli bean sauce then add the oil and the chilli flake mixture. Season with the pepper, sugar and rice vinegar.
Turn off the heat and stir in the spring onions. Pour over the fish and serve immediately.
Below are some other classic Chinese recipes on this blog that you can use in conjunction with this recipe to produce a complete Chinese meal or banquet:
Fish and Seafood Dishes:
Stir-fried Scallops with Asparagus
Chinese Vegetable and Coconut Curry