Cooking a whole fish in Asian culture generally symbolizes happiness, prosperity, and good luck. Today, my husband Reid is sharing with us how he cooks a delicious and simple steamed fish. Every year at family get togethers, Reid will offer to make this recipe and it's always a hit!
My grandma who is currently 98 as I am writing this, enjoys his fish because I believe it brings back old memories of when her and my late-grandpa used to make steamed fish usually at our family parties to bring in the new year. Their recipe was a little different than Reid's recipe including more sugar and mirin. They also used to boil somen noodles and place around the fish as well. Click here to check out their video/recipe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQTZ8c1iKrw
Reid's recipe is quite simple and uses a flash of hot peanut oil which I believe seals in all the ingredients and gives the fish nice flavor. To watch how he makes his fish, click here:
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How to make Chinese Style Steamed Fish:
Prepare the fish and ingredients.
For this recipe, Reid went to Chinatown in Honolulu to purchase these fish. These (in the photo) are 1 1/2-2 pound red snapper fish. Any red fish will do. Other examples of fish that will work are opakapaka and ehu. Another location to purchase quality whole fish is Whole Foods. (We actually went there first however they were out of whole red fish on this day.).
Make sure your fish is cleaned and descaled.
Use a fish steamer or pot (that can steam) big enough for the fish to add in whole. Here is a fish steamer that you can purchase if you do not have one:
Mince 4-6 cloves of garlic.
Grate a 1 1/2 piece of ginger
Chop 1 stalk of green onion and 1 bunch of cilantro/Chinese parsley
Approximately 2-3 cups of shoyu
2 cups of peanut oil
Hawaiian salt (to taste)
Steam fish approximately 12 minutes a pound. Once the eyeball turns white and starts to pop out, the fish is generally ready.
Keep heat on medium/meduim low when steaming.
Add Hawaiian salt and sprinkle the garlic, ginger, cilantro and green onion over the fish.
Drizzle shoyu over the fish and create a layer of shoyu covering the bottom of the pan.
Once you are done, heat approximately 2 cups of peanut oil. When the oil is hot, drizzle over the fish.
The fish are ready to be served!
Chinese Style Steamed Fish Recipe
Red Snapper (Steam 12 min per pound)
1 stalk green onion
1 bunch of cilantro
5-6 cloves of garlic
Shoyu (covers the bottom of the pan)
Peanut oil (Approximately 2 cups)
Hawaiian salt (to taste) https://amzn.to/3lAeHuN
Fish Steamer https://amzn.to/30n8BFW
We hope you enjoy steamed fish! Let me know if you try this recipe and how it turned out!
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