Serve up this succulent stir-fry fish coated in the most lip-smacking sweet and sour sauce. This sweet and sour fish with egg-fried rice comes together in less than 30 minutes and is perfect if you want a restaurant-style midweek Chinese dinner.
The sweet and sour combo
Sweet and sour dishes can be found in every corner of the world and is so popular and a lot easier than you may think. There are many variations of it however the base remains the same – sugar, vinegar and tomatoes. You want to balance the flavours by using sweet and tangy ingredients such as peppers and pineapples, and this is the key to a good sauce. Thicken it with cornflour and you will get this shiny glaze that looks darn tasty. Take a closer look at the photo below… mouth-wateringly saucy!
What ingredients make a sweet and sour fish
Fish: Any fish that has a firm flesh will be suitable for this dish. I have used hake as it becomes firm and meaty when cooked.
Peppers: They add a vibrant colour to the dish as well as a fruity and sweet note.
Onions: Cut the onions into quarters about the same size as the bell peppers. When stir-fried the onion quarters will hold their shape and bring a crunchy texture to the dish.
Pineapple: Brings a sweet and slightly tart flavour to the dish. Use fresh or tinned.
Spring onions: Slice diagonally and stir in the sauce just before turning off the heat.
Sweet and sour sauce: Sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, oyster sauce and the pineapple juice are used to make the sauce.
Cornstarch: It helps thicken the sauce.
The meat-free version
Swap fish for tofu, or you can add more vegetables. Some veggie options that are perfect for this dish are carrots, mushrooms, or even soya beans. You want firm vegetables that stir-fry well.
How to store leftovers
This dish is best eaten on the same day. You can refrigerate the leftovers in an airtight container and use within 2 days. The fish might absorb most of the sauce, however you can add a little water when reheating to loosen the consistency.
Sweet and Sour Fish with egg fried rice.
- 350 g White fish fillet
- 3 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 red pepper diced
- 1 yellow pepper diced
- 1 large onion quartered
- 1/2 cup tinned pineapple chunks
- 1 bunch spring onions sliced diagonally
- vegetable oil for frying
- sea salt and cracked black pepper
- Steamed rice cooled
- 2 eggs beaten
For the sauce
- 1 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 3 tbsp sugar
- 3 tbsp vinegar
- Pineapple juice from the tin
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- Prepare the fish: Cut the fish fillet into 5cm pieces. Pat dry with kitchen paper on both sides and season with salt and pepper. Coat the fish in cornstarch and remove the excess.
- Fry the fish: Heat a cup of vegetable oil in a wok and fry the fish for 2 minutes on each side. Fry a few pieces at a time to ensure the fish remains crispy. Set aside on kitchen paper to drain the excess oil.
- Stir-fry vegetables: Using the same pan, discard the excess oil and leave the equivalent of 1 tbsp oil in the pan. Add the onions and peppers, and stir fry for 5 minutes. Add the sugar to coat the vegetables.
- Make the sauce: Mix the vinegar with the soy sauce and oyster sauce. Add to the pan followed by the pineapple chunks and juice. Next mix 1 tsp of cornstarch in 2 tbsp water and pour in the sauce. This will thicken it. Cook for another 3 minutes until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
- Make egg-fried rice: In a frying pan add some oil and fry the eggs. Season with salt and pepper, and break the eggs with your spoon. Add the steamed rice to the pan and stir well. Make sure the rice is cooled so it does not stick to the pan.
- Serve: Carefully place the fish in the sauce and stir gently. Sprinkle the spring onions and serve with the egg fried rice.