Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Chinese New Year Dish: Spicy Fish Maw 香辣鱼鰾

Chinese New Year Dish: Spicy Fish Maw 香辣鱼鰾

Recipe source :  Adapted from Y3K Magazine, Issue No. 58, 1/2 - 2011 ( Catherine Chia )

The mood for Chinese festivities has begun for me. I love the exhilaration. I love to walk and browse through the shops and market stalls while happy Chinese New Year songs fill the air! 

It's time to get busy with Chinese New Year preparations. Many shops and stalls at the market  have already started displaying goodies for Chinese New Year. A wide selection of cookies, nuts and all kinds of auspicious food associated with the Spring Festival abundantly filled up baskets and urns, fighting for available space to be seen. They seem to be beckoning to me and all customers and urging "buy me, buy me"! Ah, my imagination has run wild. It's because I am so happy! My favourite time of the year has arrived. 

I have a lot of fish maws at home which were gifts from friends and relatives. So, I shall start off with cooking a fish maw dish.  

Fish maws are delicacies commonly used to prepare Chinese New Year dishes. Not all people like to eat fish maws because they do not like the smell of fried oil nor the "fishy" smell. A shop proprietor once taught me how to get rid of the "fishy smell" and oily odour by using a little vinegar during the preparatory process. His tip works!

Being Malaysian, I love spicy dishes. This version is delicious and is a very delectable change from the conventional ways of cooking fish maws. 

Gong Xi, Gong Xi, Gong Xi Fa Cai!


80g fish maw
2 slices ginger
3 pips garlic, chopped
160g Chinese cabbage, cut into sections of 4 cm
5 pieces assam (tamarind) soaked and drained
4 dried chillies, cut into 2 sections
1/2 tbsp fermented soy bean
300g pork belly, sliced
1 stalk leek
600ml water
3 tbsp cooking oil


2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp chilli sauce
2 tbsp tomato sauce

For fish maw

1.  Soak in water until soft. Place into 1 litre of boiling water and add in 1/2 tsp of vinegar. Boil for about 10 minutes. Let is cool.
2.  Squeeze off excess water .
3.  Rinse again several times and squeeze off excess water from the fish maw. Do so gently to prevent breaking
4.  Cut into bite-sized pieces.


1.  Heat wok with 3 tbsp cooking oil. 
2.  Saute ginger and garlic until fragrant.
3.  Add in fermented soy bean and fry well. Then add dried chillies, pork belly and Chinese cabbage. Stir-fry well.
4.  Add in water, assam pieces, seasoning and fish maw.
5.  When it comes to a boil, lower heat to medium flame and let it simmer for 15 minutes.
6.  Add in leek and stir-fry until almost dry.
7.  Switch off flame and dish up. 

Hosted by Miss B of Everybody Eats Well In Flanders 
and co-hosted by Charmaine of Mimi Bakery House

I am linking this post to  Cook-Your-Book#20
Hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours



  1. Hi Doris,
    The morning market near my house have already started selling CNY cookies too! And the prices have sky-rocket!
    Your dish looks delicious, I love eating fish maw.
    This dish really calls out CNY!
    Thanks for sharing with CYB.
    Happy New Year!

  2. Hi Doris,
    Happy New Year ! This spicy fish maw soup looks very yummy, will be useful for me when I visit my family in Feb, since I don't have fish maw here but I am sure my mum has it since our family loves eating fish maw. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe :)

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