Popped down Ben Thanh market in District 1 this morning to cadge a sprat or two for dinner. I coughed up 70,000VD (£2.50) for the fine specimen above.
I think it’s a kind of Tilapia, but I don’t know for sure. It’s a red snapper (see comments). This particular seller always seems to have the scoop on exotic, fresh fish. I intend to steam it tonight. I think I’ll wrap it in a banana leaf with some lemongrass, garlic, shallots, coriander and shredded coconut. This recipe for Banana leaf steamed fish sounds solid, but I’ll have to chop and change it and ditch the heavy spices if the toad is to get his fill too.
If you have any fab, simple(ish), baby friendly, steamed fish recipes
involving banana leaves and you can tempt me with it in the comment box
some time this afternoon, I may well give it a go. I’ll also update this post tomorrow if the thing is a success. More on buying a fish at this market here. More pics from this morning here and here’s a wee film
of my fish getting filleted.
UPDATE: I decided to take Robyn‘s advice – see the comments below – and go the oven route. the above (crappy) picture is the post-cooked fish. Inside, incase you didn’t read the comments, are the two fish fillets, chopped fresh coriander, finely chopped lemongrass, minced garlic, sesame oil, a dollop of coconut cream, salt and lemon (zest and juice). Actually that’s a lie. I forgot to add the juice… idiot.
Open her up and it does look a bit like someone dropped a bottle of milk and a couple of fish fillets on a big green leaf. And in a way, that’s exactly what I did do. But it tasted great served over rice with a side of greens. Firm, fresh fish is never a loser, is it? It’s coriandery, lemony and coconuty, the three e’s. Fab. Will try again. Definitely baby friendly too. The toad never left a scrap. The little hoglet.