Another fish dish using round scad. As I mentioned before, round scad is very cheap and readily available in any wet market. A good source of protein in affordable price. Very important variables in grocery shopping bible these days huh. I am very fond of them – except one minor drawback, that they always need to be deep-fried. It also has very interesting texture when deep fried – the meat is a bit tough and chewy, but nobody ever seem to mind.
My mother loves to deep-fry them till the skin is crunchy, and then prepares the chili paste separately. When ready, the fish is then tossed in to the wok with paste and mixed well.
The crunchiness of the fish and the tanginess of the chili paste are great combination. As usual, the only missing element is the warm steamed rice.
The base chili paste (sambal goreng in local dialect) with stinky beans can be used with any kind of dish. Chicken, squid, any type of seawater fish, even tofu for vegetarian style sambal goreng.
1/4 cup (30 gr) stinky beans (optional)
10 (50 gr) shallots
4 cloves (10 gr) garlic
80 gr Thai red chili, sliced thinly & diagonally
30 gr Thai red chili, for paste
0.5" fresh ginger
1/2 tablespoon shaved palm sugar block (or brown sugar)
6 (650 gr) fresh round scad (or any seawater fish)
1 (130 gr) whole tomato, quartered
1 tablespoon dark sweet soy sauce (Indonesian brand such as Kecap Bango or ABC Kecap Kental Manis)
1/2 tablespoon salt
2 cups cooking oil for deep frying fish
3 tablespoons extra cooking oil for stir-frying chili paste
1/3 cup water
Wash fish, remove the innards and pat completely dry
Heat cooking oil in wok over high heat. Deep fry fish for 3 - 5 minutes. If the fish are dried properly, the cooking time is considerably reduced. When the skin turned dry and crisp, remove and set aside
Combine chili, garlic, shallots and ginger in a mortar or bowl of spice grinder. Grind for 5 seconds if using electric grinder till reaches coarse paste.
In a wok, heat extra cooking oil over high heat. Stir fry the paste and stinky beans for 3 minutes. Add salt, sliced chili, water, tomatoes, sugar and soy sauce. Mix well
Toss in the fish. Cook for another 3 minutes
Serve warm with rice