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Discovering Cantonese Steamed Fish

Hey there, foodies. Today, we’re spilling the tea on one of the OG dishes from China that’s making waves worldwide – Cantonese Steamed Fish! Trust us on this one: once you try this classic and realise how easy it is to get chef’s quality food at home, there’s absolutely no turning back. So, stay with us, read carefully, and prepare to be amazed! You know a dish is special when it marks a spot in every family celebration. The Cantonese steamed fish is one of those big favourites on any Chinese table, almost always served on special occasions. Usually prepared whole and presented in an oval dish, it is brought to the table for each diner to use their chopsticks to remove their share of fish flesh from the bones. It comes with a medley of aromatics like ginger, garlic, and scallions. And the best thing is that it’s super easy to prepare at home. Yes, you can have it as an appetiser in a five-star restaurant, or showcase it on your very own dinner table on a casual weeknight. If you're itching to put your own spin on this dish, remember: freshness is key. Popular options in Mauritius include snapper, sea bass, tilapia, or grouper, but feel free to get creative and go with whatever's fresh and in season. After all, variety is the spice of life. And for those of you who cannot easily access whole fresh fish, fish fillets will do. Seek out those that are uniform with shiny firm flesh and delicate ocean-like smell. Soon, whole fish will be a regular item on your grocery list! Also, don’t forget to invest in a top-notch steamer. Once you've got your steaming setup sorted, the rest is a piece of cake. And to top it all off: once the fish is perfectly steamed, crank up the heat under your wok and add those final touches with the aromatics. Et voilà ! You've got all the tools you need to whip up a top-notch Cantonese steamed fish. You have our blessing to make it your own. Don't wait around—call up your friends, grab those chopsticks, and let them taste the very best that China has to offer!

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Here is an easy Cantonese-style Steamed Sea Bass recipe for beginners, requiring no special tools:

Cantonese Steamed Sea Bass

Ingredients:

  •  1 lb whole sea bass, cleaned and scaled
  •  2 tbsp soy sauce
  •  1 tbsp rice vinegar
  •  1 tsp sesame oil
  •  2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 inch ginger, julienned
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • Cilantro for garnish

Instructions:

  • 1. Place the whole sea bass in a heatproof dish that can fit inside a large pot or wok with a lid.
  • 2. In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce, rice vinegar, and sesame oil. Pour this sauce over the fish, making sure to coat it evenly.
  • 3. Scatter the minced garlic, ginger julienne, and chopped green onions over the top of the fish.
  • 4. Fill the large pot or wok with about 1-2 inches of water, making sure the water level is below the dish holding the fish.
  • 5. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Place the dish with the fish inside the pot/wok, cover, and steam for 8-10 minutes, until the fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork.
  • 6. Carefully remove the steamed fish from the pot. Garnish with fresh cilantro.
  • 7. Serve the Cantonese steamed sea bass immediately, spooning the cooking juices and aromatics over the top.