May 18, 2022

Chinese Steamed Red Grouper with Ginger and Scallion (油淋清蒸紅條魚)

Red grouper fillet works really well with this recipe, its firmer or more so bouncier meat can withstand the steaming step while locking all the moisture inside. If you can't get a hold of red grouper, sea bass can be another good alternative.

Fillet is the easier route, but usually, I mean traditionally this recipe is for the whole fish. If you decide to go with that route, just remember the steaming time can take a few minutes longer.

Chinese steamed red grouper with ginger and scallion (油淋清蒸紅條魚) - 

Chinese steamed red grouper with ginger and scallion



  • 200 grams red grouper fillet (skin-on/boneless)
  • 3 ginger slices
  • 2 strings scallion
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese rice cooking wine
  • 1 small pinch salt


  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese rice cooking wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper powder
  • All the remaining juice from steaming (about 1 1/2 tablespoons)


  • 2 strings scallion
  • 2 red chilies
  • 1 slice ginger
  • 3 tablespoons preferred simple-tasting oil


Prepare a good size bowl or plate that would fit into the steamer. Lay out 3 ginger slices on the bottom and top with shorter sections of scallion. Wipe the fish fillet with Chinese rice cooking wine then put on top of the scallion.

Chinese steamed fish preparation

Into the steamer and cook for about 10 minutes, or till the fish is just about fully cooked through. If you're using whole fish, you can test the doneness by sticking a chopstick to the center of the fish. If the chopstick comes out clean, the fish should be ready.

Take out the bowl or the plate. Transfer the fish only to the final serving plate. Make sure to choose a container with a little bit of depth since we are going to pour over the hot oil and sauce in the end.

Pour the remaining juice to a small non-stick pan. Also into the pan, add in all other ingredients listed under the "sauce" section. Bring to a boil then lower the heat to cook for another 30 seconds or so. Set aside for later use.

Sauce for Chinese steamed fish

Let's start prepping the ingredients listed under the "garnish" section. Take a peeled slice of ginger and cut into thin threads. Destem and remove the seeds from red chilies, cut the remaining part to thin threads too. 

Do the same for the scallion. First cut the scallion to shorter sections then cut into thin threads. Soak that in icy cold drinking water, so that the scallion can curl up. Drain and pat dry with paper towel.

Mix together the julienned ginger, red chili, and scallion. Put these three on top of the steamed fish.

Aromatics for Chinese steamed fish

Prepare a small pot and pour in about 3 tablespoons of oil. Use more oil if you're cooking one whole fish. Turn to high heat and wait till the oil gets really hot. If unsure, you can pick out one scallion thread and add to the oil, see if it starts sizzling. If that's the case, the oil should be good to go.

Drizzle the hot oil over threaded aromatics. It's a success if the aromatics start to make that sizzling sound. After that, pour over the sauce prepared earlier and serve immediately.

Chinese steamed red grouper with ginger and scallion

I wish one day technology can let me share the smell through internet. It's like sweet and savory, yet slightly pungent at the same time. I'm almost certain that the smell when the sizzling hot oil hit the aromatics will definitely make you drool a wee bit. 

Chinese steamed red grouper with ginger and scallion

Some people prefer to drizzle the sauce first then the hot oil in the end. It's totally up to you. The flavor doesn't really vary that much, equally good if you really ask me to pick a side.  

Other fish recipes:

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