If you can’t get banana leaves, wrap the fish parcel in foil instead. Eat with rice. Fail-safe barbecuable food.
Soak the noodles and mushrooms (if using) in cold water until just soft - about 10 minutes - then drain. Finely shred the mushrooms and roughly chop the noodles. Toss the chopped fish flesh with the fish sauce, salt, pepper, chilli, turmeric and sugar, then toss through the garlic, onions and oil. Fold through the prepared mushrooms and noodle. Place the mixture in the middle of a large square of banana leaf, then fold in the sides and wrap into a neat flat-looking square parcel. Lay this in the middle of a second piece of banana leaf and wrap up again. Repeat with the remaining leaves, to make a neat package. Grill the package over hot charcoal for about 6 minutes on each side; alternatively steam for about 10 minutes. Serve the contents of the parcel over steam-boiled rice and mound with herbs. Have dipping sauce at the ready.
© 2004 Alastair Hendy. All rights reserved.