About this recipe:This recipe pairs two fantastic elements together to create a stunning main dish. Tom yam soup is used as a broth to moisten a whole crispy fried fish. Use medium sized fish like grouper, catfish or snapper. This recipe can easily be downsized to fit the amount of guests you may have.
1 whole fish (500-600g) such as grouper, gutted and scaled
Oil for frying
1.5 litres rich chicken or fish stock
1 finger galangal, peeled and sliced
3 kaffir lime leaves, torn
1 stalk lemongrass, cut into 3 cm lengths
4 crispy fried dried red chillies
1 shallot, sliced
3 blades culantro (pak chi farang)
2 tomatoes, quartered
1-2 tablespoons fish sauce
2-3 limes, juiced
2 tablespoons tamarind juice
Directions Prep:20min › Cook:40min › Ready in:1hr
First, score the fish with diagonal slits along both sides of the body, also make two slits down the backbone on either side of the dorsal fin. These cuts will let the fish cook more evenly and will create the maximum amount of crispiness.
Heat enough oil in a wok to submerge the fish by half. When the oil is hot, gently place the fish in the wok.
When one side is crispy and cooked, carefully flip the fish to fry the other side. When the second side is cooked, carefully remove the fish from the wok and let drain on paper towels.
For the broth, add the stock to a pot and bring to a simmer.
Add the galangal, kaffir lime leaves and lemongrass. Simmer for 30 minutes. The stock should be very rich and slightly reduced.
Add the chillies, shallot, culantro and tomatoes. Cook for 5 minutes. Season the soup with the fish sauce, lime juice and tamarind juice.
Just before serving, adjust the seasoning, it may need more stock, lime juice or fish sauce. Place the broth in a deep platter. Place the fish in the broth and serve.