What to buy
- A whole fish. Most fish can be pan-friend. If in doubt, ask the fishmonger.
How to cook
- Score the fish, across its body 3-4 times, deeply
- Lightly salt both side of the fish, leave for 15-30 minutes
- Heat wok on high flame until it’s hot
- Pour in quite a bit of oil, wait till that’s hot
- Sprinkle on some salt into the oil, let it sit for 15-20 seconds
- Dry the fish with paper towels (salting will have brought out extra water earlier)
- Slide the fish onto the wok, the hot oil should immediately start sizzling up to it
- Turn down the flame slightly to medium/medium-high
- Let the fish sit there for at least 45-60 seconds (otherwise the skin will break)
- Swirl the wok around if necessary to let the oil work on the edges/head/tail of the fish
- Gently flip the fish, let it fry for a while
- Continue to flip the fish occasionally, to check to see whether the insides are cooked (having scored the fish helps here) and to and until its skin is crispy, golden-brown and even a little bit toasted
About the author
Jason Li is a Hong Kong-based cartoonist and designer. He is the author of The House on Horse Mountain, an upcoming graphic novel about a young girl growing up in a bygone Hong Kong of the 1960s, and creator of Add Oil Comics, a social advocacy webcomic. Integrating elements of social science, illustration and social media, his works have been appeared at the Victoria and Albert Museum, Asian Art Museum, on the BBC, and on the radio in Spain.
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