Oven Roasted Trout & Chinese Style Fried Potatoes is like a sexy date between two cultures: the Norwegian & the Chinese. The chinese part, the Chinese style fried potatoes, is a recipe I picked up from a cookbook called “Xiang – Mat og Kultur fra Hunan” (Xiang – Food and Culture from Hunan), written by chinese chef & author Feng Xian Lin. As you might understand by deciphering the title of the book, it gives you some insight & knowledge, not only about Chinese cuisine, but also about the culture and traditions in Hunan.
The potatoes are wok fried and fits well as a side dish with chicken, fish or meat, but lets start with the fish:
For the main course you need the following:
- 1 whole trout (the size is up to you)
- 2-3 crushed garlic cloves
- 1 small red onion divided into 4
- peanut oil (or another oil that is good for frying. I always use peanut oil as this has the highest smoking point)
- juice of 1 lime (squeeze over fish & into the abdomen)
- a splash of margarine or unsalted butter
- 3 sprigs dill (or other herbs)
- finely chopped ginger
Gut & clean the fish, cut off the head. If you want to keep the head of the fish to cook broth or something, remember to remove the gills – never cook broth with gills, ’cause this can give the broth a metallic flavor.
Sprinkle salt and pepper in the belly of the fish and fill it with finely chopped vegetables and herbs.
Place the fish on a double sheet of greased aluminum foil. Wrap the foil tightly around the fish and put the whole package on a roasting pan / deep ceramic plate in the hot oven with the seam up.
Leave it in the oven at 200 ° C for 30 – 50 minutes. (200 ºC = 392 ºF )
If the fish is big & fat and/or very cold when it goes in the oven, it needs longer cooking time.
Check the fish after 30 minutes. Leave it for longer if needed. A rule of thumb is that the fish is done when the dorsal fin loosens.
Chinese Style Fried Potatoes – Tu Dou Si
- 2 large potatoes
- 2-5 fresh chillies (red chilli)
- 4-10 spring onions
- 5 coriander plants (Europe – Coriander / US – Cilantro)
- 3 cloves garlic
- peanut oil (the recipe says sunflower oil, but I prefer peanut oil)
- 1 / 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 3 tablespoons sesame oil
- 3 tablespoons rice flour
Crush and finely chop the garlic. Cut the chilies julienne (strips that are cut Julienne are very thin & they should be as uniform as possible in all directions).
Julienne is a culinary knife cut in which the food item is cut into long thin strips, not unlike matchsticks. Sometimes called ‘shoe string’, e.g. ‘shoestring fries’. Common items to be julienned are carrots for carrots Julienne, celery for Céléris Remoulade or potatoes for Julienne Fries.
Wash the cilantro/coriander and spring onions and cut them into 5-6 cm lengths (discard the roots). 5-6 centimeters = 2-3 inches.
Mix the rice flour with a few tablespoons of cold water (to make a smooth mixture).
Peel and cut the potatoes into thin strips. 5-6 cm long (julienne).
Then put them in ice-cold water for 1 minute before you throw the potatoes in boiling water (only the potatoes, not the ice-cold water), leave the potatoes there until the water boils again and let them boil until they are slightly tender.
Remove the potatoes and place them back into ice-cold water again.
Heat the oil properly on high heat. Add the garlic, salt and chilli. Stir fry for a minute.
Add the vinegar, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, coriander, spring onions and potatoes. Stir. Add the rice flour, stirring constantly.
Let it cook for a few minutes.