From a young girl through my teens, you couldn’t get me to eat fish on my own. (Yes – there were plenty of times I sat at the table long after dinner was over with a plate of some type of fish staring at me. But I couldn’t leave the table until I ate least ate some of it. Undoubtedly, my parents always won that game).
Now I can’t eat enough of it! Unfortunately we cannot get fresh fish where I live. So frozen fish it is and one such fish that we eat quite frequently is Tilapia. The frozen variety is of high quality and very reasonably priced. It has mild white flesh that takes beautifully to sauces (or a simple squeeze of a lemon).
I typically make blackened Tilapia or Tilapia with a Parmesan crust and lemon sauce. I’m always on the look-out for new ways to prepare it and this intrigued me by the short list of ingredients including the main ingredient, Chinese black bean garlic sauce. I’ve never cooked with it although I love it in recipes that I’ve ordered while eating out. So I decided to give the recipe a try. The results were far better than I could have hoped for! Simply delicious!
Tilapia with Scallions and Black Bean Sauce (adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine, April/May 2010)
- 3 Tbsp. Chinese black bean garlic sauce or black bean chile sauce*
- 1 Tbsp. oyster sauce*
- 2 tsp. lower-sodium sauce
- 1 tsp. sesame oil
- 1 tsp. rice vinegar
- 1 tsp. Asian chicle sauce, such as Sriracha* (optional – use if you like your food spicy)
- 1 1/2 lbs. Tilapia fillets, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1 bunch scallions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
- Cut the Tilapia into 2-inch sections as shown below:
- In a large bowl, stir together all ingredients except for the Tilapia. Add the fish and stir gently to coat.
- Cover and let sit for 20 minutes.
- Heat the oil in a well-seasoned wok or 12″ nonstick skillet. When the oil shimmers add the fish all at once, distributing it evenly around the pan. Cook without stirring for 3 minutes.
- Add the scallion and stir gently. Cook, stirring occasionally and gently, until the thickets part of a piece of fish is opaque throughout (cut to check), 2 to 3 minutes more.
*This can be found in the international aisle of your supermarket, with the Asian foods.
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