Whole steamed fish with pickled plums (pla neung kiem buoy)
- April 2020
- Serves 2 (or 4 as part of a Thai meal)
- Hands on time 10 min, Cooking time 20 min
Steaming food is a key technique in the Thai kitchen. Kay Plunkett-Hogge shows how to master the gentle art of steaming with a simple but stunning recipe for steamed whole fish with pickled plums. It’s a revelation.
Make sure to check out our recipe for whole roast plaice too! It’s truly stunning and served with anchovy butter, new potatoes and sea vegetables.
- Dairy-free recipes
- PER SERVING (FOR 4) 190kcals, 9.9g fat (2.1g saturated), 18.5g protein, 6.4g carbs (5g sugars), 2.2g salt, 0.8g fibre
- 1 whole fish, about 400g (pomfret is traditional, but tilapia and seabass work well), scaled and gutted
- 3 pickled plums in brine and 1 tbsp of their liquid (if using umeboshi just add 1 tbsp water), stoned and roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1-2 spring onions, sliced diagonally
- 2cm piece fresh ginger, finely sliced
- Handful chinese celery leaves (or regular celery leaves)
- 1 large red chilli, finely sliced
- Cooked sticky jasmine rice to serve
- Wash, then dry the fish well with kitchen paper. Use a sharp knife to cut a few slashes in each side, down to the bone. Set aside.
- In a bowl, mix the plums and their liquid/water with the soy and oyster sauces, sesame oil, sugar and 2 tbsp water to form a sauce, squashing the plums with the back of a spoon to break them down a little. Keep stirring until the sugar has dissolved.
- Put the fish on a heatproof plate that will fit into your steamer (or see tip). Pour the sauce over the fish, cover, then steam on a medium high heat for about 15 minutes, depending on the size of your fish.
- After 15 minutes, add the spring onion, ginger, celery leaves and red chilli. Cover again and cook for 5 minutes more or until the fish is just done (when you can lift the flesh off the bones easily using a knife tip).
- Transfer the fish to a warm serving platter and pour over the cooking
juices. Serve with steamed rice.
If you don’t have a steamer, heat the oven to 200°C/ 180°C fan/gas 6. At step 3, put the fish on a plate in a roasting tin, cover with foil, then bake for 15 minutes and continue with step 4.
Prepare the fish, sauce and garnish up to 4 hours ahead and chill. Assemble and cook the fish to serve
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