Steaming fish at home is easier than you think – this dish takes under 15 minutes to cook and you won’t need a steamer, I promise. And I just love the infusion of garlic, lime and coriander. It reminds me summer holidays in Thailand as a kid, when this would be the centrepiece.
2 lemongrass stalks, bruised and cut in half
2 x 200g white fish fillets (e.g. barramundi, snapper, cod, halibut)
lime slices, to serve
coriander leaves ,to serve
1 red chilli, finely sliced, to serve
steamed rice to serve
Spicy lime & garlic sauce:
4 birds’ eye chillies, roughly chopped
2 coriander roots, roughly chopped
4 garlic cloves
½ tsp sea salt
¼ cup chicken or fish stock
3 tbsp fish sauce
3 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp sugar
For the spicy lime and garlic sauce, use a mortar and pestle to pound the chillies, coriander roots, garlic and salt to a rough paste. Transfer to a bowl and mix with the stock, fish sauce, lime juice and sugar.
Place the lemongrass on a plate large enough to fit your pieces of fish but small enough to fit into your wok or a large deep frying pan with a lid. Place the fish on top of the lemongrass. Season the fish with salt.
Fill your wok or frying pan about ¼ full with water and bring to a simmer. Make a trivet out of foil by scrunching it up into a rough cylinder and coiling it around into a circle. Use tongs to place the foil trivet into the simmering water. Place the plate of fish on top of the foil and push down to secure (the water level should be below the plate). Cover with a lid and steam for 5 minutes. Then remove the lid and pour the spicy lime and garlic sauce over the fish. Replace the lid and steam for a further 6-7 minutes or until the fish is cooked through.
Carefully remove the plate of fish from the pan. Garnish with lime slices, coriander and chilli slices. Serve with steamed rice.