Crispy Tilapia with Spicy Basil Sauce

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It was such a long time that I have not cooked this dish for the family to enjoy. I just felt that it is time to make this dish to share with family and friends. I am so glad that I did as it turned out wonderfully. I can admit that this dish is a little fattening as the fish is being fried but I believe that once in awhile we should treat ourselves to some spicy tasty food.

 

 

Ingredients:

3 large tilapia/snapper fillets, sliced into chunky strips

½ cup cornstarch for coating

½ cup all-purpose flour for coating

Salt and black pepper to taste

Canola/vegetable/corn oil for frying

Sprigs Basil leaves to your desire

 

In a mixing bowl with cornstarch, all purpose flour, salt and pepper, and combine well. Use kitchen paper towel and pat the tilapia/red snapper strips dry and then drench into the flour mixture and coat on both sides well. Dust off all the excess flours.

Meanwhile, heat a pot/deep fryer with canola/vegetable/corn oil over medium-high heat to 350°F. Once it is hot enough, gently drop each coated fillet strip into the hot oil without crowding the fryer and deep-fry until golden brown. Drain onto a plate lined with kitchen paper towels. Continue frying in batches until all done. Also deep the sprigs of basil, drained. Set all the fillet strips and sprigs of basil aside.

 

Sauce:

2 tablespoons canola/vegetable/corn oil

1 medium yellow onion, peeled and sliced

6 pieces red Thai chili, stem removed, finely minced, if you like hotter, just add more

8 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

3 tablespoons fish sauce

3 tablespoons oyster sauce

2 tablespoons light soy sauce

1½ tablespoons lime juice

1/8 cup water

1 teaspoon raw sugar

1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and stem removed and sliced

1½ cups loosely pack basil leaves

1/3 cups finely chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

 

Method:

Heat a sauté pan/wok with canola/vegetable/corn/olive oil over medium heat. Stir in the garlic, red Thai chilies and sauté until fragrant and lightly browned. Toss in the red bell pepper and onion slices and sauté a little further. Add in the fish sauce, oyster sauce, light soy sauce, lime juice, water, raw sugar and stir to combine well for about 1 minute.

Add the crispy fried fish strips and toss it well with the sauce. Add in the basil leaves and cilantro and a quick stir-fry. Check the seasoning. Once it is to your taste. Remove from the sauté pan/wok onto a serving dish and top it with the fried sprigs of basil. Serve it with steamed rice or just as it is immediately.

 

 

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