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Cantonese Steamed Whole Sea Bream

After spending some time living in Hong Kong, this healthy, light and flavourful dish became one of our real favourites. Cooking it takes us straight back to this incredible island, with its electric energy and delectable cuisine. Make sure to find the freshest fish you can; any white fish will work.


  • 1 whole sea bream

  • 1 tsp unrefined sea salt

  • 1 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine

  • 3 stalks spring onions, 1 of them finely shredded

  • 3 tbsp soy sauce

  • 2 tsp unrefined light brown sugar

  • 1 tsp sesame oil

  • 2 tbsp Domaine de Gerbaud extra virgin olive oil or groundnut oil

  • 1 inch piece of ginger, finely shredded

  • handful of chopped coriander leaves


Wash fish and pat dry, then rub evenly with salt and rice wine. Make sure to rub inside the belly. Place the fish over two chopsticks, or even 2 stalks of spring onions, set over a plate. This will make for more even cooking.

Set up a steamer by putting a rack into a wok/pot over boiling water, and set the plate of fish on the rack (make sure it doesn't touch the water). Steam over high heat until just cooked, about 18 min for mine.

Carefully transfer the cooked fish to a new plate.

Stir together the soy sauce, sugar and sesame oil, and drizzle over the fish. Scatter the spring onions and ginger over.

Heat the olive (or groundnut) oil in a pan until smoking, and then immediately pour over the fish. It will sizzle and crackle delightfully. Garnish with coriander, and serve straight away with plain steamed rice and your favourite vegetables.

Recipe courtesy of Kikkoman.

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