The word sounds like “raw” fish in Cantonese and that’s the idea I had while getting this recipe from my veggie vendor. This readily available fish at most wet marts in Hong Kong comes LIVE – flipping and flopping for your viewing pleasure and is not expensive. I have never eaten this fish before and glad that someone introduced it to me – definitely another breed to my limited repertoire of the huge fish variety in Hong Kong.
What is this?
A type of predatory fish with a head that resembles that of a snake
They have become an unwanted fish in natural environments as they eat other fish and have no known enemies in the natural environment – which is why it is a very common and readily available fish in Asia
Adult snakeheads can grow up to 1m in length, but in general, the wet marts carry ones that are about 30 cm in length
Commonly eaten in most Asian dishes (soups, fried, stews)
How do I prepare it?
When purchased, have your fish vendor de-scale, gut and chop your fish into a manageable size
Rinse with warm water prior to frying
With a few slices of ginger and a tsp of oil, pan fry your fish before using in soups
Use a soup bag when boiling in soups
Where can I buy this?
Available fresh in most wet marts in Hong Kong
Unsure of availability in North America
What is the cost?
A 30cm length snakehead fish cost around $13 HKD
It is considered a very common and accessible fish and therefore very affordable
Excellent source of protein
Low in fat
Be sure to thoroughly clean and cook your fish prior to eating
Buy your fish from a reputable source
Any other fish is a great substitute for fish soup
Soup Name: Corn, Pumpkin and Carrots in Fish Broth
Traditional Chinese Name: 玉米南瓜紅蘿蔔湯 (yù mǐ nán guā hóng luóbo tāng)
Introduction: A natural soup with no Chinese additives or herbs, it is sweet, packed with beta-carotene and eats like a meal. I tend to add more corn and pumpkin because the children eat these vegetables and the fish base soup is low in fat and extremely healthy. You can use a variety of fish (whatever is seasonally fresh is best) and it takes about an hour to make. A neutral soup ideal for the whole family!
Tomatoes are the ideal partner in fish soups. It helps alleviatesome of the fishy scent as well as bring a sweet and slightly sour taste to the soup. This soup is ideal for confinements and children (at least one year in age as tomatos are an ingredient that is on the acidic side) and is very neutral and healthy. There is virtually no fat in the soup and the broth is rich in flavour and nutrients.