I love Asian steamed fish. It's a simple and healthy dish that infuses the bold flavors of ginger, garlic and green onions into a delicate and rich soy broth, in which the fish is cooked. The traditional recipe calls for a whole fish that is typically cooked in a large bamboo steamer. I tweaked the classic recipe to accommodate fillets in place of whole fish and poached the fish in parchment paper to simulate steaming.
Most white fish varieties will work for this recipe, including striped bass, sea bass, cod or red snapper. For this recipe, I used pollack, which is part of the cod family, and because it was one of the best and fresh looking fish from my local fish monger, The Lobster Place on 15th Street and 8th Avenue.
ASIAN STEAMED FISH WITH GINGER AND SCALLIONS RECIPE
2 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
4 tablespoons tamari sauce or low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1-2 thai chiles, sliced thinly (optional)
4 (7-ounce) fillets of white fish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4-inch knob ginger, julienned
6 large garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
1 bunch scallions sliced thinly
1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
Cut four sheets of 12-inch long parchment paper.
Season fish with salt and pepper.
Combine the honey, rice vinegar, tamari sauce, sesame oil and thai chiles, if using. Set aside.
Place a piece of parchment on a baking sheet then in the center of the paper create a bed for fish to lay on with roughly a tablespoon of each of the following: scallions, shiitakes, ginger and garlic and top with fish. Sprinkle another tablespoon of each of the vegetables onto the fish.
Spoon 1/4 of the sauce over the fish.
Repeat with remaining parchment and ingredients. Any extra vegetables should be evenly distributed among the four packets.
To seal the packet you may take the four corners of the parchment paper and fold it down, or take a bamboo skewer to thread them together.
Arrange the pouches on a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 12 to 14 minutes.
Serve with steamed white rice.