Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Live Tilapia, Yummy Tilapia

Help me! Blub blub blub.

Next time you're hankering for some fish for dinner, get it live! This fish literally is so easy it only takes about 15 minutes to prepare and cook. It’s good for a weekend dinner, since you can go get your fish during the day and it’ll still be fresh for that evening without having to freeze. Be sure to ask them to clean it for you, unless you are adept at scraping gills and gutting while the fish is flapping around on a table (I am not). Tilapia is also one of the more environmentally friendly fish to choose, since the farms are located inland and aren't susceptible to escape and pollution. Find out more at the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch Program.


Live tilapia (1-2 lbs)


Lemongrass, minced

Sea salt

Cilantro or Thai basil

Sweet chili sauce like this

Eat me! Yum yum yum.

Wash the fish thoroughly. Rub some sea salt and lemongrass into the body of the fish. Make a few incisions along the body, and stuff with slices of galangal and scallions.

Steam in a steamer over a wok until the flesh is opaque. This will vary depending on the size of your fish, but it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes or so. When it’s done, top with fresh cilantro or sweet basil leaves, and serve with sweet chili sauce in the bottle, or some soy sauce, sesame oil, and scallions if you want to do it more Chinese style.

My fish wouldn’t fit in the whole steamer, so I cut off the head (I know, so barbaric!) and steamed it in the second level of one of those bamboo steamers. But ideally you should cook it with the head on because it will be moister. The best parts are the belly, tail, and cheek. Yum! Good with white jasmine rice and some greens.


Eli Edmundson said...

That looks great!

Eli Edmundson said...

I love the cheeks the best, ordered a braised yellowtail cheek once and it was phenomenal.