Friday, February 25, 2011

Sweet and Sour Fish - In Squirrel Shape

I just returned from a business trip to Beijing and while I was there I had the pleasure of eating tons of great food. One of the dishes that stood out was a sweet and sour fish done in a Squirrel Shape. I loved the look and the taste.

I highly recommend this if you see it on a menu.

I am going to try to do it at home and I found this recipe online....maybe next Friday for Gourmet Night !

Attached is a picture of the dish I tucked into.

Here is the recipe:

Sweet and Sour Fish (In the Squirrel Shape)


1 Whole Fish (Blue cod is the best fish to use for this traditional dish)
2 Cups Pomegranate Juice
1/2 Cup White Vinegar
2 Tbsp Cornflour
2 Capsicums
1 White Onion
2 Celery Sticks
1 Egg
Canola oil for cooking
Flat Leaf Parsley

Cooking Instructions:

Cut the capsicum, celery and onion into small chunks.
Prepare the sauce by mixing the juice, vinegar and cornflour - stir until is cornflour is dissolved.
Put aside.

Clean and scale the fish.
Carefully cut the head from the fish and then cut across the chin so the head opens out facing the stars.
Butterfly Fillet the Fish being very careful to keep the fillets joined, then cut deep diamond shapes careful not to cut all the way through.

Coat the fish fillets in egg and then completely cover in cornflour - it's very important to rub cornflour into every diamond fold so they separate when cooking.
Also coat the head of the fish.

Heat deep frying canola oil until smoking hot, then drop in the head to cook, hold the fish fillet at the top and tail and hold it into the hot oil in a curve until the shape has started to set then drop the whole thing in to cook. Cook for a couple of minutes then carefully remove and drain. Arrange the head and body on the plate in the squirrel shape.

Stir fry the vegetables until just cooked but still crisp, add the sauce and stir until thick.
Pour over the fish on the plate and garnish with pine nuts and a little flat leaf parsley.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

2011 Updates....what's going on ?

I apologize for the lack of home made"Yummy" things on the blog. With work getting busy again, and the toddler and newb keeping us extremely busy [and sleep deprived], the meals haven't been, shall we say, noteworthy. Not to say they aren't tasty and well prepared, just a lot of the 'same old same old'...which in our case, is just fine with me. (aside: I did make some nice fluffy 'Canadian' Pancakes and some gourmet pork/beef burgers stuffed with goat cheese but just haven't had time to update yet....maybe tonight ?)

For example, we picked up some value/family packs of pork loin and salmon. Easy to cook in different ways and perfect for quick put together meals. Two nights ago we had salt and pepper salmon on a bed of fried veg. Simple...And last night used the remaining salmon for a quick butter garlic salmon pasta (I finished the last bit of that for lunch today). The menu next week ? Probably Pork, Salmon and Pasta again.....

So what to do...

It wasn't a hard decision. We decided that Friday's are now GOURMET NIGHT ! We will take the time to dust off the cook book project and put a bit more effort into what we cook up on Fridays (something other than simple pork loin, salmon or pasta).

I think I will also update with the quick meals since there are probably people out there wondering what they can do..FAST and EASY.

Here's to some interesting dishes coming our way in 2011 !!!!