Saturday, April 07, 2007

Eating In: Thai Fish Parcels

First and foremost, I don't know why I'm having such issues with the text of my blogs lately -- despite having all the text the same font and size, it gets smaller as the entry goes. Most annoying. What you're seeing here is actually the font starting at "smaller" size and ending up being "large" Sheesh!

It's only in the last few years that I've started to tentatively explore the fish side of the human diet. I started off gently, with extremely fresh, deep-fried flake and chips at The Boatshed in
Batemans Bay on the NSW south coast. This progressed to buying the frozen crumbed fillets and baking them at home.

So this year I decided that I'd start exploring fresh fish and how to cook it. And what better time to start than Easter? Now, I'm not religious at all, I don't subscribe to the whole "can't eat red meat on Easter" thing, but meh, this public holiday was a perfect excuse to spend time with my bro, and make a scrumptious (ok, I'll be happy with edible) meal of fresh fish.
I went looking for information on cooking fish and found it quite interesting, if not all THAT helpful.

Thanks to the MSN Recipe Finder I located a dish that sounded delicious, and seemed pretty darn quick and easy. That it also appears to be quite light and healthy is just another bonus.

Thai Fish Parcels - to serve 2

Start preheating the oven to about 200C. Cover about 100g of rice stick noodles in boiling water until they're just tender then drain them. Divide the noodles into two piles and place each pile in the bottom of a foil pouch (ie. make a pouch out of some foil. I'd recommend giving it a very light spray with some canola oil or similar). On top of this place the fish. The recipe calls for 150g bream fillet per person. More about this later. Then on top of the fish fillet throw some quartered baby bok choy, a few snow peas, a little thinly sliced lemon grass and a couple of torn kaffir lime leaves. Combine half a teaspoon of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of sweet chilli sauce, half a teaspoon of fish sauce and a tablespoon of lime juice. Drizzle an equal amount over each stack. Seal the foil pouches up and put them, in a single layer, on an oven tray.

Cook for about 15 minutes or until the fish is cooked. Then transfer the noodle-y fish-y goodness to the plate and dish it up with some roughly chopped coriander. The recipe suggests serving with lime wedges or a salad of fresh pomelo or grapefruit segments. Pfft!! Fancy stuff! You can also apparently assemble everything a few hours ahead and keep it all in the fridge.

Now, i tried my darndest to find bream, but in the madness that is the Thursday evening before Easter Friday it was a lost cause.
Having absolutely no clue what to buy instead, the young lass who served me was less than no help. Eventually I decided on the smallest white fish fillets I could see there: something called basa. Apparently it's a type of catfish. And it worked quite nicely! Although as you can see, my presentation still sucks :-)

Ah, also, any excess lime juice you have don't throw out - a squirt in some nice chilled water is divine.

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