All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Sakana no tochimushi / steamed fish with douchi black beans

A quick steamed fish with a very Chinese flavor from green onions, ginger and douchi black beans. Currently one of my favorite fish dishes.


1-2 fillet white fish (200 g rockfish in photo)
1 knob ginger
4 green onions (white part)
5-10 stems cilantro
1/2 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp + 1 tsp shiaoxing wine
2 tsp douchi black beans
1 tbsp oil (not in photo)


Julienne green onions and ginger.
Roughly chop cilantro.
Slice fish into pieces 2-3 cm wide.


In a heat-resistant plate or shallow bowl, place fish, add half of green onion and half of ginger (this green onion and ginger will be discarded after steaming; use portions that are of lesser quality) and douchi.

Mix oyster sauce and shaioxing wine, and pour over fish.


Steam for 10-15 minutes on medium heat until done.


Remove green onion and ginger, and put the remaining green onion, ginger and cilantro.


In a small pan, heat oil until it starts to smoke.

Pour oil over fish in a swirling motion. Serve hot.

  • Fish has to be fresh. The seasoning for this dish is on the light end and cannot cover up the smell of previously frozen or old fish.
  • Replacing green onion and ginger after steaming ensures a fresh taste and crispy julienned vegetables at the end, which makes for a light dish.
  • If the oil does not make a sizzling sound when poured over fish, the temperature is too low, and the dish will be greasy.
  • Before starting to steam, make sure the water is boiling and steam is already coming up.
  • Douchi is fermented black beans, which are the main ingredient of black bean paste. While black bean paste gives a much richer taste, probably because of its oil content, douchi by itself imparts a clean yet deep taste.
  • If you don't like cilantro, the green part of green onions (julienned or thinly diagonally sliced), mitsuba (chopped), kinsai (chopped) or celery (chopped leaves or thinly sliced stems) would work just fine.
  • Sake can substitute for shiaoxing wine. Shiaoxing wine adds more flavor, while sake would make the dish taste lighter.

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