Smoked kingfish salad

Smoked kingfish salad

New Thai Food
Jeremy Simons

The kingfish is placed on a piece of banana leaf before being smoked in a steamer basket over an aromatic, and distinctively Thai, smoking mixture. The piece of banana leaf should be large enough to hold the fish but not cover all the steamer holes. You can finish by either pan-searing or grilling the fish – this will give the flesh a crisp finish.


Quantity Ingredient
1 quantity Smoking mix
1 x 10 cm square banana leaf
1 x 200g kingfish fillet or other firm white fish fillet
1 tablespoon canola oil
roasted peanuts, to garnish
lime wedges, to garnish


Quantity Ingredient
1/2 lebanese cucumber, halved and finely shaved into ribbons
6 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 spring onion, julienned
1 long red chilli, seeded and julienned
15g coriander leaves
5g mint leaves
2 tablespoons crushed roasted peanuts


Quantity Ingredient
100ml Sweet vinegar
2 tablespoons chinese black vinegar
1 tablespoon kecap manis
2 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
4 green bird’s eye chillies, finely sliced
1/4 teaspoon Roasted chilli powder


  1. Line a wok with aluminium foil. Place the smoking mix ingredients on the foil in the wok. Turn the heat to high and start to smoke the ingredients.
  2. Line a steamer basket with the piece of banana leaf and place the kingfish on top.
  3. Put the steamer in the smoking wok. Turn off the heat, cover with the steamer lid and let the smoke infuse the fish for about 7 minutes. This method gives the fish a caramelised, smoky flavour but does not actually cook it. Remove the fish on the leaf from the steamer and set aside.
  4. To make the salad, toss all the salad ingredients together in a mixing bowl and set aside.
  5. To make the dressing, whisk together all the dressing ingredients in a bowl. Taste – it should be sharp in flavour, with the sharpness mellowed by the kecap manis and black vinegar. Set aside.
  6. Brush the fish with the oil. Heat a frying pan over a medium–high heat and pan-sear the fish on both sides. Or heat a hotplate or chargrill pan on medium–high, place the fish on the hotplate or pan and cook. Both methods will take about 5 minutes. Remove the fish from the heat and leave to rest for 2–3 minutes.
  7. Break up the fish and add to the salad. Pour over the dressing and toss to combine well. Transfer the salad to a serving plate and garnish with the peanuts and lime wedges.
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