Grandma Teochew Braised Fish on 10Mar2017

grandma braised fish

sis bought this fish couple days back, from a market vendor near her place.

we could not recall the name of the fish. it looked like the fish our grandma cooked sometimes like 50yrs ago, but we could not really be sure.

I googled & asked around including with china relatives; & also friends who asked their relatives in china. still could not quite determine which was it? 扁鱼,鲮鱼,鲫鱼…none really quite fit.

I had no clue how to cook the fish. between sis & I, we roughly recall what the finished dish looked like – it’s like a big pot of fish with either salted vegetables or梅菜 mustard vegetables. I don’t recall the fish being deep-fried so likely only braised, and braising not such an usual method to cook fish.

sis & I also recall seeing this dish (in teochew we called “kor her” 柯鱼 which is like braising fish) at joo seng teochew muay stall at havelock road.

interestingly after I created my own recipe & came up with the final dish, I showed it to 2 different teochew friends & rightaway they recognised the dish. one friend remarked – since his father in law passed on, he never get to eat this dish.

stock base – belly pork, onions, chinese cabbage & later sweet mustard vegetable

anyhow I decided that the veg should be 甜梅菜 sweet mustard vegetables.

& I also know a good way of preparing that – of course a lot of washing to remove the sand & salt, then fried in pan with sugar & chicken stock, then steamed in steam oven for 1.5hrs like what I did for my 梅菜扣肉 recipe here.

I decided that the stock base should be yellow onions, chinese cabbage, belly pork, lots of garlic cloves, and of course lots of ginger & I used about 12 dried chilli.

stock base – belly pork, onions, chinese cabbage & later sweet mustard vegetable

I did the dried chilli & onions, garlic, ginger together with the belly pork in oil, fried to soften the onions & get the aroma, then added chinese cabbage & leek, then added vegetable stock, covered & stewed.

grandma braised fish

the fish I cleaned with salt, keeping the scales & not removing the gills. I think this holds up the fish better since I am braising it. if I am deep-frying it first maybe I will remove the scales & grill, not sure.

grandma braised fish – blanched

& I blanched the fish in boiling water. ie boiled the water first, placed the fish inside & boiled for another few minutes. then I removed the fish. this fish was/looked fishy, so I wanted to remove the fishy smell.

grandma braised fish

then I put the fish in the wokpan, brought it to boil. added 3 tbsp light soil sauce, added 4 large dried dates.

grandma braised fish

covered it & braised for 1hr thereabouts.

mui choy 梅菜

for the last 15mins I added the steamed mui choy – dried mustard leaves 梅菜 which was very soft.

grandma braised fish

the braising part is about judging the timing & the liquids. the idea was of course to reduce the liquids so the fish was cooked but holding together not falling apart & the gravy was very tasty & the accompanying vegetables & ingredients were wonderful tasting.

grandma brasied fish

I think I managed that really well la!

the taste of the ingredients & gravy were just superb!

grandma braised fish

the fish itself was not quite my favourite.

it was the kind of fish with lots of bones. but the fish meat was sweet. the cleaning & blanching treatment had removed most of the fishy smell but still a fish I think only Teochew will eat.

another thing, this fish while it looked like the fish my grandma cooked, it didn’t have the unique bell-shape thing that we like to eat in the fish belly, so we still not sure if this was the fish.

grandma braised fish

there were 11 fish. I took 2. sis & bil took 5 between them, so left with 4.

grandma braised fish

I packed the remaining 4 fish with the ingredients for my sis to bring home.

I did not have any interest in this fish actually, but since my sis bought them & brought to may place, so I cooked it. the process though was really quite exciting, and reminiscent of the olden days.

and of course the fish & ingredients came out really well, very tasty. still I not sure if I want to do this again.

c.h.e.f andy

Usual Nice Dinner @ Ah Yat Grandstand on 9Mar2017

claypot alsakan crab legs tanhoon – S$38

wanted a place nearby & decided to go ah yat at grandstand for dinner on 9.3.2017.

had a really good lunch with my OPS friends, 6pax, at ah yat seafood grandstand on 26.7.2016.

we like the seafood here, good price & mostly happy & satisfied. much the same this evening. ^^

garlic steamed razor clams 蒜蓉蒸竹蚌 S$18

we ordered the usual garlic steamed razor clams 蒜蓉蒸竹蚌, about S$8.90 each.

this is always good. today though, wife felt it was a bit tough ie oversteamed, which was true.

claypot alsakan crab legs tanhoon – S$38

we ordered the S$38 Alaskan crableg tanhoon claypot.

claypotalsakan crab legs tanhoon

tanhoon very tasty. lots of pepper & garlic.

claypot alsakan crab legs tanhoon

crab legs were fresh & sweet.

today though not as good as some other times.

gong bao frog legs 宫保田鸡 S$10.80

the frog legs were excellent this evening.

gong bao frog legs 宫保田鸡

the 2 bull frogs were really large, & meat so fresh, bouncy, succulent, to the extent that we were kidding – got injection or not?

quite a sad thing actually, that when food is too nice (like watermelon very sweet) we think something might have been done to it…

gong bao frog legs 宫保田鸡

this a really large helping for 2 frogs.

at any zi char it would be S$18.

gong bao frog legs 宫保田鸡

this was the best dish for this evening.

ah yat 2pax dinner bill

dinner for 2pax came to S$85. pretty good price for the food we had.

c.h.e.f andy

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Ah Yat Seafood @ Grandstand

Address

#03-01/02, The Grandstand, 200Turf Club Road, 287994

Reservations

+65 6884 6884
+65 68832112

Opening Hours

Daily: 11:30 – 14:30

Daily: 17:30 – 22:30

Most Enjoyable Late Valentine’s Dinner on 1Mar2017

Fresh prawn | Rojak flower | Thai basil | Pistachio | Burnt lemon 

was looking for a place to have valentine’s dinner with wife.

saw this summer house & the S$128pax 10-course collective farming menu on their website. menu looks great & the reviews were all good so i booked 2pax dinner on 14.2.2017.

however upon checking i realised that the 14feb price for the same dinner menu was S$300pax, so i cancelled that & rebooked 1.3.2017. ^^

we are both not particular about having this on the actually date. usually we do before.

so in any case i did my own valentine’s dinner for wife on 14.2.2017. & that’s not bad too! ^^

the summerhouse 

summerhouse is located in a nice 2-storey colonial building at 3 Parl Lane in seletar.

the summerhouse 

large dining area with high ceiling & tables were spaced quite far apart. there were 4 tables including ours occupied for the evening.

the summerhouse 

restaurant is helmed by chef florian ridder, formerly sous chef of the one-Michelin-starred Alma in Goodwood Park Hotel.

chef came to talk to the diners though for this evening he did not come over to our table.

10-course collective farming menu 

the menu looked fine so we awaited the experience. & it was great!

first item was prawn. this chef uses a lot of herbs & scents & edible flowers, and the overall experience was very pleasant & enjoyable.

i did not expect much from the prawn. it was competent. the bread was more distinctive.

Tri tip beef tartare | Passion fruit brown butter | Pickled chilli | Mint

the tri-tip beef tartare was a great dish. i am not sure it’s better than a traditional beef tartare dish which is also very sweet tasting & satisfying.

Tri tip beef tatare | Passion fruit brown butter | Pickled chilli | Mint

i guess it was very good too & different, and quite suited for this 10-course tasting.

Uni-soy sauce ice cream | Ikura | Toasted nori

the uni on uni soy sauce ice cream on a bed of ikura was a fabulous dish, a wonderful experience, something we did not expect. outstanding la!^^

Raspberry pickled beetroot | Barley | Black sesame | Fried shallots | Ricotta

the beetroot was quite a huge dish, even shared by 2pax.

Raspberry pickled beetroot | Barley | Black sesame | Fried shallots | Ricotta

i always like beetroot,don’t get to eat often. this one according to the lady server was sous vide overnight.

Raspberry pickled beetroot | Barley | Black sesame | Fried shallots | Ricotta

& it went really well with the ricotta cheese.

Eggplant | Mild goat cheese | Coriander oil | Tomato broth 

the eggplant was excellent too!

Eggplant | Mild goat cheese | Coriander oil | Tomato broth

& with all the flavourings, cheese, coriander, tomato broth.

Bacon | Parmesan | Chinese spinach | Sunflower seeds 

the buckwheat porridge was good too.

Bacon | Parmesan | Chinese spinach | Sunflower seeds

but really this was too large a serving. 1/3 or even 1/4 would be quite enough.

the parmesan & bacon provided a nice salty tasty, but less fascination for me c/w the uni dish, beetroot & also the eggplant dish.

Carrot pesto | Orange blossom hollandaise | Nasturtium

the grouper i guess must be sous vide also, great texture but somehow missing the sweet taste of a fish that is fresh & done well.

Carrot pesto | Orange blossom hollandaise | Nasturtium

not really much to pick at overall. it had the k & the texture & the foam & other condiments so should really taste great but was just ok.

Carrot pesto | Orange blossom hollandaise | Nasturtium

wife didn’t care for the dish. i guess it was ok for me.

Pickled pumpkin | Kranji mushroom | Earl grey jus | Grapes

the full blood mayura wagyu was really good!^^

amoong the best non japanese wagyu that i had la…

Pickled pumpkin | Kranji mushroom | Earl grey jus | Grapes 

very nicely done! nicely charred, properly medium rare, very flavourful.

Pickled pumpkin | Kranji mushroom | Earl grey jus | Grapes 

& it was a large serving – 4 slices say 120g or more even…i will come back just for the beef. i think it mige on the set lunch menu??

Guava yoghurt sorbet | Lychee-coconut mousse | Raspberry puree | Rose meringue

flower – this dessert did not leave much impression.

Guava yoghurt sorbet | Lychee-coconut mousse | Raspberry puree | Rose meringue 

looked nice, different texture & temperature, but no much impression.

Rye ice-cream | Honey | Milk | Plum

sourdough – this one i liked.

Rye ice-cream | Honey | Milk | Plum

had a great combination of flavours.

overall dinner was really a very enjoyable, different experience of taste & flavours. not the more traditional degustation at cornerhouse, & reminiscent of the best of jaan..

it was also not the same as labrinth which was very fusion whereas here that summerhouse the important thing for me was that the dishes tasted really good – all of them in fact…

the service by the lady server was very good. she explained well & was quite knowledgeable. the other lady server was also quite knowledgeable. the male server a bit distance, not so friendly towards us.

c.h.e.f andy

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++