Hed Chef: Thai-Chinese dish of kra por pla phad haeng (stir-fried fish maw)
Are you one of those grappling with a surplus of luxury dried goods left over from the festive season?
Try cooking this Thai-Chinese dish of kra por pla phad haeng, which is stir-fried fish maw with beansprouts and eggs.
I added prawns and crab meat, which were sitting in my fridge, and they elevated the dish with texture and flavour. The look of the dish reminds me of fried carrot cake but without all the carbs.
Fried fish maw is best stored in the fridge, but do not make the mistake of hoarding it as it can still go rancid.
Parboiling the fried fish maw rehydrates it and helps remove the oil. Adding white vinegar, spring onion and ginger to the boiling liquid is useful to rid the fish maw of any strong fishy odour.
But do not overboil the fish maw as you do not want it to disintegrate, and it is important to rinse the parboiled fish maw to remove as much of the greasiness as possible.
For this quick and simple stir-fry, I used mid-range quality fried fish maw that costs $17 for a 200g packet.
How to tell if it is of reasonable quality? Cooked fish maw should have a gummy texture when you bite into it. The gummier it is, the better.
Kra por pla phad haeng (Stir-fried fish maw)
(Makes 8 servings)
- 1.5 litres water
- 1 tbsp white rice vinegar
- 1 whole stalk of spring onion
- 1 thick slice of ginger (14g)
- 100g fried fish maw
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked and sliced
- 6 prawns (300g), shelled & deveined
- 2 eggs (55g each)
- 150g crabmeat
- ½ tsp ground white pepper
- 3 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tbsp light soya sauce
- 100g beansprout
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1½ Shaoxing wine
- 2 stalks of spring onion, sliced diagonally into 4cm lengths
1. Bring the water to boil in a pot. Pour in the white rice vinegar. Add the whole stalk of spring onion and ginger slice.
2. Place the fish maw in the boiling water and boil over high heat for 7 minutes. Turn off the heat and remove the fish maw from the pot.
3. Rinse well and gently squeeze the fish maw to remove excess water.
4. Cut the fish maw into 3.5cm-wide pieces. Set aside.
5. Heat the cooking oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat.
6. Add the chopped garlic and fry for 30 seconds until fragrant.
7. Add the shiitake mushrooms and fry for 45 seconds.
8. Add the prawns and fry for 30 seconds until half-cooked.
9. Add the two eggs and stir-fry for 10 seconds.
10. Add the crab meat and ground white pepper. Stir-fry for 45 seconds.
11. Add the fish maw, oyster sauce and light soya sauce.
12. Stir briefly then add the beansprouts. Stir-fry for 30 seconds.
13. Add the sesame oil, Shaoxing wine and stir-fry for another 30 seconds.
14. Garnish with the cut spring onion and serve immediately.