Saturday, April 30, 2005


Steamed fish with veggies and ponzu sauce

Here's a simple, healthful, quick dinner for two.

Since I assembled this without a recipe, I'll give you approximations as to the amounts. You don't have to follow this to the letter. Try improvising on your own. But do try to get a bamboo steamer, it is quite versatile and you'll use it often.

2 good sized fillets of firm white fish (talapia, cod, halibut, haddock)
6 medium shitake mushroom caps
two good handfuls of fresh, thoroughly washed spinach leaves (strip off the stems)
enough snowpeas for two
1/2 large red pepper, cut in strips
salt & pepper to taste
small bunch of scallions

Ponzu sauce:

(You can go to the internet and find an authentic ponsu sauce, or make your own variation, which is what I did.)

Squeeze the juices from a fresh orange, lemon and lime into approx. 1 cup of high quality soy sauce. (No LaChoy, please!) I go to an Asian food store and buy the best they have. It is worth it. Most recipes require some sake added, but I didn't have any, so I added a couple squirts of rice vinegar, a bit of minced garlic, minced cilantro and parsley. And that's it!

If you can, go to an Asian market and buy yourself a bamboo steamer. I used a steamer to make this recipe, which is delicate and quite tasty.

The bamboo steamer has two compartments in which to place the food being steamed.

I arrange the veggies on the bottom basket of the steamer, then I place the spinach on the second basket and put the fish on top of that.

I place the steamer over a slightly smaller pot (so that the steamer overlaps the pot) with about 2 cups of water in it. Bring it to a simmer and let the steam do the cooking. It works quickly. Fish is done when it flakes.

Place the ponzu sauce in the bottom of a shallow pasta bowl, arrange the fish and vegetables over the sauce, and serve immediately.

You can, of course, serve this with rice or rice noodles, as you wish.

This is healthy and low in calories. Enjoy!

I love steamed fish (actually, I like white fleshed fish prepared almost any way). Being English, fish and "specials" (potato slices dipped in batter and deep fried) were a fairly regular part of the family menu, especially when my grandparents were alive. Now, if I want deep fried fish, I usually just go to LJS. But if i am fixing fish at home, I usually use a method I learned up in Canada:

lightly butter a heavy cast iron or cast aluminum griddle. arrange filets on griddle. lightly satl and pepper. sprinkle on a little dill weed. drizzle on a little lemon juice. turn flame on under griddle to low. DO NOT TURN THE FILETS. They are done as soon as the top turns from translucent to white.

This fish is very moist and tasty, very easy, and goes great with steamed veggies of any kind. This method of cooking works well with any white fleshed fish!
Healthy and tasty - indeed! I must get a steamer, and we have lots of places in town where I can look for one, despite our puny Chinatown. I suppose one could use a rice steamer if one had one. My friend I just helped move is getting rid of his...

I made a citrus braised tilapia the other day which was also super low in calories and seriously delicious. I need to tweek the recipe though, so I'll post it once I feel I have it perfected.

Great pictures, too; they really add to the overall experience of your blog.
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