Julia Stephan

Editor at Kitchen Stories

In need of cooking inspiration? Look no further! Our inventive community creates fabulous recipes, and we choose the best one each week to cook, photograph, and publish for the world to taste. If you’d like your own recipe to be featured, send it to community@kitchenstories.com.

Our community recipe of the week comes from our user “VR” who loves to add an Asian note to his dishes. For this healthy dinner, he combines a beautiful sea bass with a spicy thai dressing. You have to try it out!

Poached sea bass with Thai dressing

Poached sea bass with Thai dressing

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We love this recipe because…

It’s not always so simple to cook a light dinner that will not just fill you up, but is also easy enough to make and impressive to eat. But, here’s a dish we think combines all of these factors and will definitely satisfy you and whoever you are cooking it for.

The dressing of chili, garlic, lime juice, fish sauce, palm sugar and cilantro roots hits all the important flavor marks. It’s salty, sweet and spicy all at the same time and brings all this to the flaky sea bass.

Our community member ‘VR’ also included a secret tip for poaching the fish: He places a layer of aluminum foil on the pan and puts the fish on top to poach. This makes it way easier to get the fish out of the hot water, by just lifting up the edges of the aluminum foil.

The 3 ingredients that make this recipe special

Palm sugar: Palm sugar is extracted from the juice of a palm tree. It is sold in solid blocks and you can easily buy them in your local Asian supermarket or order it online. It is very important to crumble it before using it in order for it to dissolve properly. It’s difficult to substitute the distinct flavor of palm sugar, but if you really can’t get a hold of it, you could use a combination of brown sugar and a little bit of molasses, or use muscovado sugar.

Bird’s Eye Chili: This chili is originally from Africa and can be used for cooking as well as for salad dressings. It’s one of hottest chilis on the planet, thought, so be very careful. You can find this chili fresh or dry or even in ready-made spice mixes. If you can’t find birds eye chili, substitute with another kind of chilli peppers or chilli flakes.

Cilantro roots: While we often buy cilantro with stems on, Asian supermarkets sell it whole with the roots still attached. Instead of just throwing these away, you can clean it and add it to marinades or other spice pastes, just like in this recipe. If you can’t find cilantro with their root you can just use the stems.

What is poaching and how does it work?

To poach means to gently cook something in water at low temperatures. A poached egg is probably the most known dish, but you can do the exact same thing with fish, vegetables or even chicken. The most important aspect of poaching is to make sure that the water is not boiling but has a rough temperature of between 150 – 170°F (65 – 75°C).

It really depends on the recipe when it comes to the poaching liquid. In this recipe the fish is poached in water but you can also poach it in a vegetable broth that includes coconut milk. By poaching fish in a fragrant liquid, you infuse it with flavor, just like we did in our halibut in thyme milk with broccoli recipe. You can even poach your fish in olive oil, by coating it in oil and cooking it in the oven at a very low temperature, approx. 175 – 210°F (80 –100°C).

Have you got more failsafe recipes up your sleeve? Why not share them with the Kitchen Stories team and our hungry community! Simply send your recipe to community@kitchenstories.com.

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