Malaysian Black Bean Fish
When I first tasted this dish during a visit to Malaysia, I immediately recognised the Chinese influence. However, it had a pungency that was uniquely Malay. Now I often make this tasty, light and satisfying dish, which is the hallmark of the best Malaysian home cooking
|450g (1lb)||firm white fish fillets, such as cod, halibut, haddock or sea bass, skinned|
|3 tbsp||groundnut oil|
|3 tbsp||finely shredded spring onions, to garnish|
|For the sauce:|
|1 tbsp||groundnut oil|
|1½ tbsp||coarsely chopped salted black beans|
|2 tbsp||finely chopped garlic|
|2 tsp||finely chopped fresh ginger|
|1||small onion, chopped|
|3||fresh green chillies, de-seeded and chopped|
|225g (8oz)||button mushrooms, sliced|
|3 tbsp||finely chopped spring onions|
|1 tbsp||light soy sauce|
|1 tbsp||lemon juice|
|1 tsp||freshly ground black pepper|
Cut the fish fillets into strips and set aside. Heat a wok or large frying pan over a high heat. Add the oil and, when it is very hot and slightly smoking, turn the heat down to medium and add the fish strips. Fry these gently for about 2 minutes or until they are brown on both sides, taking care not to break them up. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Drain off most of the oil from the wok, leaving about 1½ tablespoons.
Reheat the wok, add the groundnut oil for the sauce, plus the black beans, garlic, ginger and onion, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Then add the chillies, button mushrooms and spring onions and stir-fry for another 3 minutes over a high heat.
Now add the soy sauce, lemon juice, sugar, salt and pepper. Stir-fry for 10 seconds. Return the fish to the wok and gently finish cooking it in the sauce for about 1 minute. Give the mixture a good stir. Using a slotted spoon, arrange the fish on a warm serving platter, garnish with the spring onions and serve at once.