|West Lake Fish|
We set out to buy some sea bass from Whole Foods but it was $25.99 per pound! Ouch. Then we overheard someone else asking for some opah...mmm..we haven't had opah in so long. Up until about 10-15 years ago, many restaurants in Hawaii offered opah as one of their fresh catches...now we hardly see it on the menu. If you haven't had opah, it's a very mild flavored, medium textured fish. Oh and the reason why we didn't go for a whole fish...we don't like picking out the bones :-)
If you don't like vinegar, you will not care for this recipe. This does have a strong vinegar flavor which we both love. Next time in Chinatown we will be picking up some black vinegar to see if it changes the taste.
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes
Cook Time: 10-12 minutes
1 1/4 lb. opah (if you have thick pieces, you'll want to cut them down to approx 1 1/2 - 2" thick) or 1 - 2 lb. whole fish (carp, snapper, seabass or other white fish)
1 1/2 quarts water
4 to 5 ginger slices, thin
1/4 c. natural sweetener (next time we'll probably use 1/8 c.)
1/3 c. black vinegar or cider vinegar
2 T. low sodium shoyu (soy sauce)
2 T. Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
2 T. cornstarch (but we are going to reduce this to 1 t. since we don't care for thick sauces)
kosher salt to taste
Rinse fish and pat dry. Using a knife, slice two or three diagonal cuts into the fish. Add the water and ginger to a wok larger enough to hold your fish. Bring to a slow simmer. Place fish in water and poach gently for 8-10 minutes or until cooked. Remove cooked fish and drain, place fish on a warm serving platter. In a bowl, mix natural sweetener, cider vinegar and soy sauce together. Remove all but 1/2 c. of water from the wok, remove the ginger slices. Add the vinegar mixture to water and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sweetener. Turn heat down a bit. Mix cornstarch into rice wine, pour slowly into the wok, mix constantly. Remove sauce from heat, add salt to taste and pour sauce over fish. Serve immediately. This dish is served family style with diners removing pieces of fish from the platter.
Enjoy...we sure did!