Saturday, September 8, 2012

Deep-fried Snapper with 3 Flavour Sauce (Thai-style)

If you've been following my recent posts, you'll know that I've been coming up with "copycat" recipes for some of dishes served at Sailors Thai. This time, I attempted to prepare the deep-fried snapper with three flavour sauce that everyone at our table of ten was raving about. As we ordered only one of each item from the menu, by the time it was passed down to our end of the table, the fish was almost mangled beyond recognition. Okay, perhaps that's an overstatement. Fortunately though, the fish head appeared to be intact, and surprisingly, nobody took the best part - the cheek! If I was having fish with my family (or relatives), the cheek would definitely be the first thing to disappear.

This is actually quite simple and easy to prepare, given that there aren't many ingredients required. The sweet, sour and spicy sauce is briefly simmered in a pan and then poured over the deep-fried fish. I've used a whole snapper here, although you could always substitute with pan-fried fish fillets if preferred. If you're using fresh long red chillies, depending on how hot they are, you may want to consider throwing in a few bird's eye chillies for some extra kick.

Deep-fried Snapper with 3 Flavour Sauce
(Serves 2-3)


800g whole snapper (or other firm white fish)
100g (3oz) fresh long red chillies, seeded and finely ground *
1-2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 sprig coriander leaves
1/2 cup Thai basil leaves

3 tbsp tamarind pulp concentrate (bottled kind or equivalent)
3 tbsp palm sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp vinegar *
1/2 tsp chicken stock granules (optional)


Heat up sufficient oil in a wok and deep fry the basil leaves for 10 seconds or until translucent and crispy. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Set aside.

Make two or three diagonal slashes across both sides of the fish. Season with salt and pepper. Coat with cornflour and shake off excess. Deep fry in hot oil until crispy and golden. Remove and drain off excess oil, and place the fish on a serving plate.

In a clean pan, heat up 1 tbsp vegetable oil and fry the garlic, followed by the ground chillies and sauce ingredients. Bring to a boil and simmer briefly (about half a minute). Pour the sauce over the fish, garnish with crispy basil and coriander leaves. Serve immediately with steamed jasmine rice.

* Note: Instead of using fresh chillies and vinegar for the sauce, you may choose to substitute with Thai sambal oelek instead, which are sold in jars. Sambal oelek can be rather hot though, which is perfect if you like it hot!


Mel said...

I loves sweet & sour fish, it is so appetizing. Eventhough now is 9.40pm .... looking at the fish, just makes me drool. Noooo, I can't take supper! Well, got to cook it one day.

Debs @ The Spanish Wok said...

This sounds good. I'm not a big fan of fish but I amy enjoy a little of this when sharing with guests.

BTW You are welcome to join in my monthly food blogger event THE SOUP KITCHEN, here for entry details and current theme. New theme each month. All bloggers are welcome, hope to see you participate soon.

Veronica said...

This dish looks super-delicious! Love the colour too!

Mary Bergfeld said...

What a delicious main course. This really sounds wonderful and it is the kind of dish my family loves. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Yummy Bakes said...

So delicious - I can have extra rice to go with the fish.

ChichaJo said...

This look delicious! One of my favorites in Thai restaurants :) And I agree with you 100% about the fish cheeks...the very best part!!

Nami | Just One Cookbook said...

Such a beautiful fish dish, Fern! I love that I have all the ingredients for this sauce, and get to use them (which I don't normally use for my Japanese cooking). Thai food is always my favorite, and I really need to work on making more Thai food at home. Thanks for sharing this delicious fish recipe!

Anonymous said...

I tried this dish and it was good. I never like using ketchup for sauce bcos my family loves a bit of hot taste. Thanks for sharing.


Fern @ To Food With Love said...

@Ade: Glad you liked it! Thanks for the feedback :-)

Sonia ~ Nasi Lemak Lover said...

one plate of rice is not enough, simply mouth watering!