Chinese Ginger Fish


A quick, easy meal for everyone who loves Cantonese-style steamed fish. The fish is best with the skin left on, as the final hot dressing will cause it to sizzle and crisp, but if you don’t like the skin, you can peel it off before steaming.


  • 5 cm. knob of fresh ginger
  • 1 small red chilli
  • 3 spring onions
  • 4 thick fresh fish fillets, with skin (eg bream, haddock, plaice, cod), around 180 g each
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp Chinese rice wine, or dry sherry
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 4 tbsp groundnut or peanut oil
  • 3 tbsp coriander leaves


Peel the ginger and cut into tiny matchsticks. Finely slice the chilli and spring onions. Gently wash the fish, pat dry and arrange on a heatproof platter that will fit into your, steamer.

Mix the soy, sesame oil, rice wine and sugar together, and pour over the fish, skin-side up. Scatter the ginger, chilli and half the spring onions on top and steam for 8 to 10 minutes, until the flesh parts easily when pierced with a knife.

Transfer the fish to warmed dinner plates and strain the juices over the top. Heat the oil in a small pan until it just starts to smoke, then pour it over the fish. Scatter with the remaining spring onions and coriander, and serve with jasmine rice.