Ginger soy steamed fish is my simple take on an age old traditional Chinese dish. I’ve been trying my hand at steaming food lately to reduce the amount of oil I use. This fish recipe happened to be one of the dishes I’ve always wanted to prepare. Somehow though, the results are never the same. I once heard that Chinese food in the US tastes different from “our” Chinese food in the Caribbean. A difference in ingredients and culture perhaps? Who knows?
Being the sort of Trini cook that I am, I tend to let my Trini tongue lead the way. And, consequently the recipe always echo my Caribbean region in some way. Only in cooking for these past 11 years have I come to terms of my cooking identity. So, no longer am I concerned about not being able to reproduce a recipe exactly as in those foreign cookbooks . Of course, I would still try to get as close as possible to the original provided I could get the ingredients.
My Ginger Soy Steamed Fish Exploration
So, here I was in the kitchen with my fish fillets thawing out and my plan of how I would proceed. I knew exactly the steps for my ginger soy steamed fish, but something happened. As I poured out the soy sauce and added the other ingredients, I felt like I was being guided to adjust the ingredients. This caused me to veer off the beaten path to a little track on my own lol. In the end though, I had my ginger soy sauce. To me it felt bolder, more robust and the taste was really gingery and soy saucy.
I almost added raw pepper, but my mind suggested that it would be too “hot” because of the ginger. I eventually decided against it and continued with my ginger soy steamed fish recipe adventure. As a side note though I opted for a little bit of red chilies.
Then the time time came for steaming. What do you use when you don’t have a steamer? You have to improvise. Honestly, I’ve been using an improvised steamer all these years lol. So now it has become commonplace to just grab a pot, my rice strainer and a pot cover…..
Anyhow, you’ll see what else I did that wasn’t really Chinese. Here’s my ginger soy steamed fish. Enjoy!
GINGER SOY STEAMED FISH
3 fish fillets ( I used swai fillets)
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tbsp grated ginger
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp red chilies
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp rice cooking wine or rum or cherry brandy
1 tsp cornstarch
1 banana leaf
Add the soy sauce, sesame oil, red chilies, ginger, water, rice cooking wine
and sugar in a bowl and stir until sugar is dissolved. Set aside.
Wash the fish with the lime. Drain, then add to the ginger soy mixture. Marinate for 20 mins.
Singe the banana leaf over an open flame and wrap the fish fillets.
Note: This step is reminiscent of when we’re making pastelles.
While I pause to enjoy my ginger soy steamed fish I invite you to try it out. Mine has literally disappeared lol
Ah gone 🙂