Tuesday, February 17, 2009
FISH IN BUTTER SAUCE WITH ALMONDS
This is a very simple fish recipe from the Australian Women's Weekly cookbook that I have tried successfully several times. The recipe calls for trout but since we don't have trout I used our grey mullet instead or ikan belanak.
As a fair amount of butter is used to shallow fry the fish and later as part of the sauce the dish has a lovely buttery flavour (obviously) and the skin fries to a lovely crisp. The almonds add a nice nutty bite in contrast to the tender flesh of the fish.
I followed the recipe and removed the bones but I believe it is not necessary if you find difficulty in doing so. You could instead make 3 scores/cuts across the body of the fish just skimming the main bone and carry on from there to ensure the fish is cooked through when fried.
The grey mullet is quite a lovely fish with a full, solid and tender flesh. It is often underrated but it is actually quite good. In Taiwan and I believe in colder waters the grey mullets are just divine. They are more oily, fatty and therefore extremely tender and flavourful while the Malaysian mullets are not nearly as moist and fatty as their northern cousins.
Unfortunately I have recently learnt that this fish can be farmed inspite of it being a saltwater fish. The Pomfret or bawal emas is also another saltwater fish that may be and is farmed. It now makes sense why the prices of the pomfret or bawal emas at certain supermarkets are exceedingly cheap where normally it will cost a substantial 25 to 26 ringgit a kilo in the wet markets. I have been buying the pomfret at a certain supermarket albeit a little hesistantly and suspiciously but I will certainly not buy anymore now. Like farmed prawns God knows what chemicals are used to breed and fatten up the fish.
The Recipe ..........
4 trout or 2 medium sized grey mullets
4 oz butter
salt n pepper
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 oz flaked almonds
2 Tbsp chopped parsely
Wash and scale the fish and pat dry. make 3 cuts or scores across the body of the fish on both sides.
Coat fish well with flour that has been seasoned with salt and pepper. Shake off excess. Heat a frying pan till hot and then melt the butter in it and fry the fish until cooked and golden brown. The cooking time depends very much on the size of the fish. Remove fish from pan and place on a serving platter; keep warm.
Place extra butter in a clean pan and stir until bubbling. Add flaked almonds, saute gently until almonds are light golden brown. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper and stir. Add parsley, stir and combine and then spoon butter sauce over the fish. Serve hot or warm with white rice.