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Vietnamese Braised Fish – Ca Kho

BY DUNCAN LU

Servings

3 – 4

Prep Time:

5 minutes

Cook time:

45 minutes

‘The fish wing is often overlooked as its meat is encased by vines but within you’ll find the most succulent and delicate parts of the fish’.

Ingredients

  • 500g barramundi wings
  • 4 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp anchovy salt
  • 2 birds eye chillies
  • 1 knob butter
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 bunch spring onions
  • 2 tbsp neutral cooking oil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 300ml coconut water
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Method

  1. In a large mixing bowl, marinate barramundi with fish sauce, anchovy salt and whole chillies.
  2. In a mortar and pestle, crush ginger, garlic and spring onion stalks (reserve the green tops for garnishing), then add to the mixing bowl and allow to marinate for 15 mins
  3. In the meantime, in a large heavy based saucepan or casserole pot add cooking oil and sugar, and simmer on low-medium until sugar caramelises
  4. Once the sugar caramel turns copper in colour, immediately add the barramundi and its marinade and saute for a few mins or until the aromatics are fragrant
  5. Deglaze with the coconut water, top up with a splash of cold water to cover as required. Bring to the boil then braise on low to medium heat, turning fish occasionally for 15 minutes or until liquid thickens into a sticky sauce. Add freshly cracked pepper and stir in gently to finish the braise.
  6. Garnish with spring onion tops cut in batons and fresh chilli
  7. Serve with freshly steamed rice and fresh cucumber or seasonal leafy greens on the side