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Deep-Fried Red Mullet with Lemon Grass, Chilli, Garlic and Ginger

Rick SteinThis is one of Rick Stein's recipes which we have kindly had permission to reproduce which should whet your appetite for more.

To find out more about Rick Stein and his passion for seafood have a look at his biography page.

Cookery SchoolFor further information about his restaurants in Padstow, Cornwall, his new cookery school and to see his online delicatessan visit his website - click here.

If you would like to know more about his books and how to order them have a look at our Bookstore which will also link you to Amazon for further details.


4 red mullet, each weighing about 275-350 g (10-12 oz)
oil for deep-frying
1 quantity Tempura Batter (see below)
For the Marinade
2 teaspoons arrowroot
120ml (4 fl oz) water
2 lemongrass sticks, outer leaves removed, finely sliced
3 small red chillies, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
5 cm (2 in) piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
juice and zest of 1 lime
3 tablespoons Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
15 g (½oz) fresh coriander, roughly chopped

  • To make the marinade, mix the arrowroot with the 120 ml (4 fl oz) of water in a small pan. Place over a moderate heat and bring to the boil until clear and thick. Remove from the heat and leave to cool before mixing with the rest of the marinade ingredients. Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or large pan to 180C / 350F.
  • De-scale and gut the fish and snip off the fins. Cut three 2.5 cm (1 in) pockets in each side of the red mullet. Insert teaspoon of the marinade into each pocket and the gut cavity of the fish. Dip the red mullet in the batter and deep fry in the hot oil for about 5 minutes. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Place the fish on a serving dish and sprinkle over the rest of the marinade. Serve the fish with the stir-fried spinach and boiled rice, preferably jasmine which you can buy in most supermarkets now.

Tempura Batter:


200 ml (7 fl oz) water
1 egg
100 g (4 oz) flour
50 g (2 oz) cornflour
1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Chill the water and egg then whisk together the ingredients just before dipping the food. The batter should only just be amalgamated.

Serves 4

Rick Stein

To visit Rick Stein's website which features regular new recipes - click here