Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Belanda Hu~ Threadfin with Aromatic Tamarind Gravy- MFF Penang #7

When I saw this recipe... by the looks of it... rather dull, rather boring.
The picture in the book was all beige.... beige only. I can't even see the chilli
But after tasting it.. nooooooooo, it's not.

How often we are taken just with looks, right?

The name.... I curious, how does this fish relate to the Dutch? Belanda is Dutch in Malay. And Hu is fish in Hokkien. Fusioned name :)

I read Nonya Flavours again and again and, thinking I have fish steaks in the freezer, I took notice of the fish recipes. Then I saw this dull looking dish, ......... the ingredients. It looked like a familiar dish, but the ingredients is a combination that I never heard of, don't talk about taste. It's hard to imagine an assam sauce that is cinnamony and yet fragrant with soooo much shallots and garlic. I decided to give this a try.
Alan, the MFF Penang host told me, it MUST be kurau, no other fish for Belanda Hu.

My mood immediately went down. I have Kerisi steaks in the freezer, but no Kurau. Wait.... wait for the next grocery trip, and let's see if I'm lucky.

I was lucky! And the price was steeper than Salmon. Gosh!

I am glad I cooked this fish and I will definitely cook this again some other day, but haha, I won't restrict myself to just the Kurau, but for this event, let's try to stick to the ways of the Penangites :)

If you like fried shallots, you'll greatly enjoy the super generous sprinkling of fried shallots all over, yum yum!

Belanda Hu (Dutch Fish)
Recipe source: Nonya Flavours  

300gm Threadfin (Kurau/Senangin) steaks
6 shallots, sliced
4 large cloves of garlic, sliced
50gm tamarind pulp rubbed with 250ml water (I used 125ml cos I don't like too much gravy)
1 cinnamon stick
1 red chilli, sliced
2 Tbsp sugar (I used 2.5 Tbsp)
Salt to taste if needed (I didn't use any)

1. Put in 3-4 Tbsp of oil into a frying pan and slowly saute the shallots on medium low heat until golden. Drain and dish up. Then saute the the garlic slices until golden and crispy too. Drain and dish up.
2. With remaining oil in pan, fry the fish steaks until golden. Drain and dish up.
3. Put the cinnamon stick into the pan (still with oil) and on medium low heat, cook the cinnamon stick for almost 1 minute.
4. Strain the tamarind juice into the pan. Put in chilli slices and then reduce to almost preferred amount of gravy (It'll reduce even more later). Adjust the taste with sugar and salt if needed.
5. Put half the crispy shallots and garlic into the gravy and then the fried fish steaks. Let it simmer for a short while (10-20 secs) and dish up.
6. Sprinkle with remaining crispy shallot and garlic.

 I am submitting this to Malaysian Food Fest Penang Month 


  1. Dear Wendy, it is so tempting and i'll definitely try this! Let's see wether can get kurau this weekend ;)

    thanks for sharing!

  2. Wendy, your fish is definitely much better looking than the one in the book. Now I feel like cooking this dish!

  3. Wendy, your kurau looks delish!! I believe Penangites are already licking their lips with rumbling tummies!!

  4. Looks great! Simple ingredients and yet delicious!

  5. ivy sew http://simplybeautifulhealthyliving.blogspot.comJune 12, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    This is so yummy and easy to prepare too. Will cook this soon.

  6. This sure is a "pembuka selera" for someone who's sick for a few days !

  7. Tried and loved it, yums!!


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