Tuesday 30 October 2012

Ikan Cencaru Sumbat (Terengganu)/Spicy Stuffed Fish

Ikan Cencaru Sumbat is one of those dishes I love and hate. This fish has many fine bones and it’s always a challenge to eat this without swallowing a bone or two. As much as I dislike picking out bones, the rempah (spice paste) for stuffing the fish is so delicious and goes very well with the firm white flesh of the fish that I am willing to take the risk!

My hubby and I would normally finish up our dinner before moving on to the fish as one really needs to concentrate. We would check each piece of fish meticulously for bones before dabbing it with lots of rempeh! The moist, flavourful and aromatic rempah is so good that my daughter was using it as a dip for her tofu.
Ikan Cencaru Sumbat (Terengganu)/Spicy Stuffed Fish (Serves 6) 
Recipe adapted from Chef Rossham Rusli for Kuali.com
  • 6 medium sized of cencaru fish
  • 3 tbsp chilli paste
  • 3 inch old ginger
  • 2 red onions
  • 5 pips garlic
  • 3 stalks lemongrass
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 thumb-sized turmeric leaf, thinly sliced (omitted)
  • 1 freshly grated coconut, just the white part (I used 250g)
  • 4 candlenut, pounded
  • 1 slice (square) dried shrimp paste/belacan, baked, pounded
  • 2 tbsp tamarind paste, mix with 1/2 cup of water)
  • salt and sugar to taste (omitted)
  • Wash and clean the fish thoroughly.
  • Blend the ginger, onions, garlic and lemongrass in a blender till fine (I added 1/2 a cup of water to make it easier to blend).
  • Stir-fry blended paste until fragrant for 6 minutes.
  • Add the tamarind juice, candlenuts, dried shrimp paste, grated coconut, salt and sugar.
  • Keep stirring until the paste is very dry.
  • Lastly, add turmeric leaf.
  • Then stuff the paste into the fish and deep-fry until golden brown for 6-8 minutes. (If using an oven, set the temperature at 160 degrees Celcius and bake for 15-20 minutes.)

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