Steamed hapuka, prawns, dried scallop sauce

Steamed hapuka, prawns, dried scallop sauce

Earl Carter

Hapuka is a wonderful fish to steam or add to a seafood stew. If unavailable, grouper is a good substitute for this dish.


Quantity Ingredient
400g baby english spinach
6 x 130g pieces hapuka, skinned and trimmed
80g fresh shiitake mushrooms, diced
12 raw prawns, cleaned and sliced in half lengthways
2 spring onions, thinly sliced, white part only
1/2 lemon, juiced
sea salt

Dried scallop sauce

Quantity Ingredient
5g kombu
250ml water, at room temperature
100ml warm water
20g dried scallops
1 tablespoon cornflour
3 tablespoons light soy sauce
3 teaspoons sweet ginger vinegar


  1. To make the dried scallop sauce, wipe the kombu with a damp cloth to clean it. Put it in a saucepan with the room temperature water and heat to 60°C — when you start seeing steam. Remove the pan from the heat and leave it to steep for 1 hour, then remove and discard the kombu.
  2. Meanwhile, soak the dried scallops in the warm water until they are plump. Drain the scallops and reserve the soaking water. Tear the scallops into fine shreds.
  3. In a large saucepan, bring the kombu water, shredded scallops and 60 ml of the scallop soaking water to a simmer.
  4. Mix the cornflour with 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl. Whisk the slurry into the simmering scallop water and let it cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and season the sauce with the soy sauce and vinegar. Taste for seasoning and set aside.
  5. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Plunge the spinach into the water, blanch for 30 seconds, strain and place the spinach in a bowl of iced water. Transfer the cooled spinach to a colander and squeeze as much water out of it as you can, then roughly chop and set it aside.
  6. Steam the hapuka for 4–5 minutes or until just cooked.
  7. While the fish is steaming, put the dried scallop sauce and shiitake mushrooms in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add the prawns and cook for 2 minutes. Add the spinach and spring onion and stir to combine. Season with lemon juice and sea salt to taste.
  8. Transfer the fish to 6 warm shallow bowls. Ladle the spinach, prawns and broth over each piece of fish and serve.
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