Diana Chan - Pan Fried Red Emperor
with a Hot and Sour Sauce
Hot and Sour Sauce
8 long red chillies, deseeded, roughly chopped
4 lemongrass stalks
4 shallots, roughly chopped
8 garlic cloves
12 kaffir lime leaves, torn
12g dried chillies, rehydrated in hot water
2 tbsp grape seed oil
4 tomatoes, skinned and finely diced
3 sprigs Vietnamese mint
juice of 4 limes
4 tbsp caster sugar
Crispy Curry Leaves
250ml canola oil
3 sprigs curry leaves
2 long red chillies, finely sliced
1 bunch coriander, leaves picked
½ cup Vietnamese mint leaves
½ cup basil leaves
juice of 1 lime
Pan Fried Red Emperor
2 x 400g Red Emperor fillets
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp grape seed oil
- For the Hot and Sour Sauce, place red chillies, white part of the lemongrass, shallots, garlic and 6 of the kaffir lime leaves into a blender and pulse until coarsely chopped. Reserve green stem of lemongrass. Add the rehydrated dried chillies and blitz to form a smooth paste. Set chilli paste aside until needed.
- Place a wok over high heat and add the oil. Add bruised green stems from lemongrass, remaining kaffir lime leaves and the chilli paste and fry until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, Vietnamese mint, lime juice, caster sugar and 500ml of water.
- Simmer until the tomatoes have broken down and liquid has reduced thickened, about 25-30 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside, keeping warm, until ready to serve.
- For the Crispy Curry Leaves, heat the oil in a medium saucepan to 180C.
- Once hot, carefully place the curry leaves in the oil, as the oil will splatter a little. Cook for 1 minute until crisp then remove with a slotted spoon. Set aside to drain on paper towel until ready to serve.
- For the Herb Salad, place ingredients into a medium bowl and toss gently. Season with salt to taste and set aside in fridge until ready to serve.
- For the Red Emperor, cut each fillet into 2 to yield 4 portions. Place the turmeric and salt into a small bowl and stir to combine. Rub the fillets with turmeric and salt mixture.
- Place a large frypan onto a medium heat and add the oil. Place the fish into pan, skin side down. Fry for 3-4 minutes to allow skin to crisp, then flip the fillets over to cook on the other side until flesh is opaque and almost cooked through, about 2 – 3 minutes. Remove pan from the heat and allow the residual heat finish cooking the fish until ready to serve.
- To serve, spread some Hot and Sour Sauce over the base of each serving plate. Top with a portion of Pan Fried Red Emperor. Garnish each plate with a few Fried Curry Leaves. Arrange a handful of the Herb Salad to the side of the fish on each plate