The giant fish (elephant ear fish) is a raw material for processing many delicious dishes, especially the fried giant fish – a famous Vinh Long specialty. With the natural flavor of fish meat and crispy scales when deep-fried, the giant fish dish is not only attractive to local tourists but also international tourists. It can be said that fried giant fish is a unique dish in Vinh Long cuisine that tourists almost cannot ignore when they have the opportunity to visit this land.
1. Better to Know as a Food Lover
Find them: Vinh Long city.
Best time: Dusk-Dawn
Don’t miss: Elephant Ear Fish
Local’s pick: Islet in Vinh Long
Tourist’s pick: Restaurant in Vinh Long
Facts: Deep-fried giant fish is a delicious, strange, and simple dish, but makes many people excited when having the opportunity to taste it. About Vinh Long river region, anyone who has enjoyed fried giant fish will find it hard to forget the taste.
2. Better to Know Elephant Ear Fish (fried giant gourami)
Traveling to Vinh Long to learn about giant fish
The giant fish (elephant ear fish) is the name of a freshwater fish with a flattened body on the side, length nearly twice its height, pointed snout, rather wide mouth, long dorsal fin, and rounded caudal fin. Normally, a one-year-old giant fish weighs about 0.5kg, whereas three-year-old fish is over 1.5kg. The giant fish has a silvery sheen and is often raised by locals in garden ditches. Every time there is a party or a distinguished guest at home, people just drop their hooves to pull up, choose which one is about 1kg, because with this size, the fish is usually sweet, chewy, and delicious in any way. With the giant fish, it can be processed in many ways such as braised, steamed with soy sauce and most deliciously fried with rice paper. Going to Vinh Long river region without tasting fried giant fish will be lacking for all visitors.
3. Elephant Ear Fish (fried giant gourami) in Vinh Long
Deep-fried giant fish is processed quite simply. Buy fish and prepare carefully, put the fish in the salt solution and soak for about 10 minutes. When making fish, do not scale, just hit the head, hook the gills, remove the intestines. After cleaning, drain the fish and then put the oil pan on until it boils. In order for the fish to be scaly and crispy, the fryer should put the fish in the pan when the oil is very hot, the fire in the frying process must be kept low. Pay attention that the fish is submerged in the oil and do not let the fire be too high so that the fish does not burn. When the fish is cooked to the right yellow, take it out on a plate, put a piece of absorbent paper underneath to help the fish drain the oil faster and not be too tired when eating because of the fat of the oil.
The fried giant fish dish looks simple, but in fact it also requires a lot of elaborate preparation, especially the dipping sauce. To make a delicious dipping sauce, you must first prepare the garlic, add a little sugar and chili, and pound it finely, if you want the sauce to be beautiful, you should mince it. Then squeeze half a lemon and a few tablespoons of delicious fish sauce into it, stir well. Add a little warm water and then taste the seasoning so that it has a moderate sweetness but still ensures the appropriate acidity. Served with fried giant fish, it is indispensable for vegetables such as herbs, bananas, star fruit, young toad buds, leaves, chives …
When eating, diners arrange vegetables on a thin layer of rice paper soaked in water, then pick up each piece of fish that is still hot, add herbs, cinnamon, and pure white vermicelli and wrap it up. put that much food in it. Lightly dip the cake into a cup of garlic and chili fish sauce, take a bite, visitors will feel the fatty taste of fish, the sweetness of boiled meat, vermicelli and vegetables along with the pungent taste of chili, the sour taste of lemon… all Blending makes diners just want to eat more.
4. How to Make Elephant Ear Fish (fried giant gourami)
Ingredients for making Western-style giant fish
1 giant fish
200g rice paper
500g fresh vermicelli
Cucumber, lettuce, herbs of all kinds
Seasoning: fish sauce, tamarind fish sauce, sugar, salt, vinegar, cooking oil
How to make Western-style fried giant fish
Step 1. Prepare ingredients
After buying the giant fish, you clean the intestines. Then you soak the fish in a bowl of water mixed with 1 teaspoon of vinegar, 1 pinch of salt, rub it on the body of the fish and then let it rest for 30 minutes so that the fish is not viscous.
Lettuce washed and drained, cucumber washed and cut thinly. For herbs of all kinds, you pick the wilted leaves, wash them, and dry them.
Step 2. Make tamarind sauce
You put the pan on the stove, add 1/3 cup tamarind fish sauce, 1/3 cup fish sauce, 5 tablespoons sugar and cook until the sugar dissolves and the mixture thickens, then add chili.
Step 3. Fry the fish
First, you put the pan on the stove and then put the cooking oil in the pan, wait for the oil to boil, then sprinkle a little cornstarch in so that when frying, the oil is not splashed. Then slowly add the fish, scoop out the hot oil and water it all over the body of the fish.
When the scales are blistered, lower the heat, see the crispy yellow underside, then flip the fish, repeat the operation until the fish is cooked evenly.
– To fry fish without oil splashing, you need to dry the fish thoroughly before frying. You need to lightly drizzle oil so that the scales do not fall off much and are more beautiful after frying.
Step 4. Finished Product
The giant fish after frying is hot and golden. When enjoying, you will feel the delicious fish meat, the skin is crispy, enjoy eating. You can eat with fresh vermicelli, raw vegetables and rice paper, there is nothing like it. What are you waiting for, try it now!
5. Pro tips:
Here are our tips for easing your mind (and stomach) around food-handling environments that you may not be used to.
Make sure the food is freshly cooked. If you’re eating hot street food, it’s always safest (not to mention more delicious) to eat food you can see being cooked to order.
Look for lines and busy stalls. Busy street food stalls are an indicator of popularity, and their high turnover rate means the food is never sitting out for hours and developing dreaded bacteria. Yes, long lines can be discouraging when you’re hungry after a full day of exploring, but it’s not worth the risk of grabbing precooked food from the empty spot next door.
Eat when the locals are eating. The last and most important element here is when to eat. You’re likely already on a weird eating schedule while you’re traveling, but it’s important to try and adjust to the eating times of where you are. A bowl of pho might be lunch for Americans, but it’s breakfast for the Vietnamese. This ensures that you’re eating freshly cooked food and that you can find the best and most popular places to eat.
If you can’t drink the water, then you can’t eat the salad. Most people get so hung up on not drinking the water or skipping ice in drinks that they don’t think about all of the other ways in which water is used in food service. Fruits and vegetables tend to be washed with tap water in most places, rather than the filtered water that locals drink—or sometimes it’s not washed at all. If you’re really craving some produce, try fruits you can peel or cooked veggies.
Trust your gut. If you’re unsure about the food or the way that it’s being prepared, then keep moving. Eating street food all over the world doesn’t make you an expert. Every stall and every country are different, and sometimes the rules can be harder to follow. When something doesn’t look, smell, or feel right, don’t eat it! Trust your judgment. Chances are that there’s another spot close by that’s making something more delicious.
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Can Tho: Co Ut’s Cong cake, Ut Dzach Fine Rice Vermicelli, Thanh Van Grilled Pork Sausage, Crab Noodle Soup At Floating Market, Scorched Rice with Caramelized Fish Sauce, 7-Toi’s Duck Meat Pancake, Banh Mi Thuy, Banana Blossom Salad, Fried Spring Rolls, Fresh Spring Rolls, Fetal duck egg (balut), Honeycomb Cake, Mini Sticky Rice Cake, Cassava Silkworm Cake, Grilled Banana Wrapped in Sticky Rice, Khmer-style Bun Goi Da Soup, Egg Coffee, Con Son Grilled Snakehead Fish, Bun Mam – Fermented Fish Noodle Soup, Lau Mam – Fermented Fish Hotpot, Grilled Snails with Pepper, Magenta Sticky Rice Cake, Duck cooked with Fermented Tofu, Rice Noodle Pizza, Vegetarian Noodle Soup, Snails Stuffed With Pork…
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Chau Doc: Chau Doc Fish Noodle Soup, Sugar Palm Fruit, Basa Fish Hot Pot, Mam (Fermented fish), Phu Huong Beef Noodle Soup, Broken Rice with Pork Chop, Long Xuyen Broken Rice, Nui Cam Pancake, O Thum’s Chicken Grilled with Lime Leaves, Stir-fried Shrimp with Sesbania Flower, Sweet & Sour Soup with Siamese Mud Carp Soup & Sesbania Flower, Caramelized & Braised Catfish, Grilled Rice-field Rat with Salt and Chili…
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Soc Trang: Pia Cake, Cong Cake (Banh Cong), Bun Nuoc Leo Soc Trang’s Noodle Soup, Soc Trang’s Bun Goi Da Soup, Duck Noodle Soup with black Pepper, Curry Noodle Soup, Grilled Beef on Tile, Khmer-style Tube Cake, Khmer-style Mung Bean Cake (Banh In), Dried Radish (Xa Bau), Stir-Fried Noodles with Seafood (Mi Sua), Soc Trang’s Green Rice Flakes…
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Ben Tre: Phu Le Rice Wine, Ben Tre’s Coconut Candy, Flat Banana, Coconut Rice, Snail Pancake, Sea Snail with Coconut Milk, Coconut Worm, Young Coconut Salad with Shrimp & Pork, Son Doc Puff Rice Paper…
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Cai Be: Puffed Rice Cake…
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Vinh Long: Elephant Ear Fish (fried giant gourami)…
Must-Eat Foods & Restaurants in Ca Mau: Banh tam ga cay (Silkworm rice cake with curried chicken), Grilled Vop clams with salt and pepper, Grilled Mudskipper Fish, Stone Crab Roast With Salt, Young Bee Salad, Nam Can’s Crab, U Minh Forest’s Honey, U Minh’s Fermented Fish Hotpot…
Hopefully, the above tips will help you to come up with a great plan for your adventure in Mekong River Delta, Vietnam. Have a safe trip!
“Sleep less, travel more, respect more” – Thomas Vietnam – Local travel expert.