Ingredient Name: Dried Salted Fish
Traditional Chinese Name: 鹽魚 (yán yú) in Cantonese
What is this?
- A dried fish that is preserved in salt (carried down from many centuries of tradition and food preparation)
- It is a fish that is treated with a salt solution or dry salt and then left in the sun to dry
- Chinese-styled dried fish is usually softened by partial decomposition before or during salting
- The fish comes available as you see it (see above picture) or in western super markets, is prepackaged
- Salted dried fish is commonly used in many Chinese dishes and stews
- It actually tastes very salty and the texture is quite dense, but not too hard
How do I prepare it?
- Rinse in warm water before soup usage
- Cut off required portion only (as it is really quite salty) – usually a quarter is sufficient
Where can I buy this?
- Commonly available in all wet marts in Asia (Hong Kong, Taiwan, China and South East Asian countries)
- You can even purchase this in some western supermarkets that stock Asian food
What is the cost?
- This is not an expensive ingredient and the price varies depending on size and packaging
- Adds a lot of extra salt “punch” without adding other additives
- Minimal preparation is needed
- Low in fats
- This type of dried salted food is extremely high in salt content and consumption should be moderated
- Some types of Chinese salted dried fish are high in carcinogenics (cancer causing agents)
- I would take extra caution with serving this to children if possible (once in a blue moon is OK, but why take the risk?)
- Store in a dry and cool place in a tightly sealed container
- Can store in the fridge for up to 3 months