Friday, August 8, 2008

Assam Fish ~ Clear Type

Assam Fish is a favourite Malay dish, which is sourish with a zest of spiciness. Fish cooked in assam sauce (tamarind sauce) makes the sauce sweet as well. Whenever I think of Assam Fish, I will kind of salivate on the both sides of my tongue. (Greg: I didn't know it's possible to do that)

There are basically two types of cooking. The one posted here is the clearer type, which is slightly more soupy. The other type is more curry-ish. We love this clear type. Eating it with rice really gives the tongue a kick. Very appetizing!

Serve 4

The Fish:

600 gm to 800 gm of fish with firm, sweet meat such as garoupa, pompret, chio beng*, han hoo*

*hokkien pronounciation. If you are unsure, the fishmonger would be more than happy introduce the good types for assam fish purpose.

2 heaped tbsp of assam jawa (tamarind)
500 to 800gm of water
3 pieces assam pieces
1 no of assam fruit (in Kuching we called it the local 'tomato'. It has a yellowish thick skin)
2 stalk of lemon grass, cut into half and smashed
salt and sugar to taste

The Paste:
4 no of red shallots
4 no of garlic
4 no of medium to big chillis
1 tbsp of tumeric/kunyit paste
6-8 tbps of oil

1) Wash and cut fish into big pieces.

2) Mix 500ml of water with the assam jawa. Strain for juice.

3) Quartered the assam fruit and wash the centre seeds with 100ml of water. Strain for juice.

4) Pound the shallots, garlic and chillis into a paste.

5) With oil in the pan, heat up and stir fry the paste till fragrant and chilli oil start appearing around the side of paste. Add kunyit paste followed by lemon grass. Continue stir frying till fragrant.

6) Add assam jawa juice, assam fruit juice, asssam pieces and assam fruit. Simmer soup with low fire till fruits are soft. Taste. If you find it too sour or if the mixture too thick, add the rest of the 200ml of water or more if you like the soup clearer.

7) Add fish, salt and sugar and bring to a quick boil. Check fish for doneness. Don't overcook the fish. Serve with rice and a nice bowl of clear vegie soup.


ganache-ganache said...

haha I know what you mean, when I think of any sourish stuff my tongue salivate too ! I love anything sour but my gastric can't take much, just had Assam Fish last nite, was such a glutton, whipped up all the gravy, my gastric gave me a hard time after that.........

NEE said...

yeap yeap sour dishes really have kick. wat a coincidence you also have assam fish.

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