This lemongrass sea bass recipe is a firm favourite of mine to make during spring/summertime. Basically, whenever the weather gets a little warmer, these are the flavours I crave for. The acidity, paired with a little tingle of spice, really helps to open up the palate and appetite. Perhaps it reminds me a little of the summer holidays to Southeast Asia when I was young, reminiscing how these flavours work like magic against the hot humid weather, and the recipe has become a way for me to cling to some of these fond memories of home. Maybe. But anyway, the point is, this recipe is a keeper!
I really love the flavour of lemongrass. It’s got such a unique flavour profile, featuring a sharp, tangy and citrusy taste plus a minty touch. For this recipe, I have mixed it together with the likes of ginger, garlic, fish sauce, chilli flakes, rice vinegar, fresh coriander, lime etc. to coat them over some sea bass fillets. The results make a great light dish and feature this terrific little flavour party. My favourite part ought to be the texture of the aromatics ingredients in the sauce/marinade. I particularly enjoy it with some fragrant buttered rice!
What is lemongrass
Lemongrass is a type of perennial grass that grows specifically in tropical climates. It is an especially popular ingredient in both Thai and Vietnamese cuisines (a key ingredient for their curries and soups), as well as used for brewing teas in India and used for medicinal purposes.
As mentioned, lemongrass carries its own unique flavour profile, typically citrusy but also with a minty touch. Lemongrass is known to have lots of health benefits as it is rich in iron and antioxidants among plenty of other nutrients. In addition, it has anti-bacterial properties and is known to improve levels of sugar and cholesterol in the blood.
Apart from cooking, one of my most favourite ways of using lemongrass is as a mosquito repellent! Trust me, it’s super handy for the hot super months in Asia.
How to make lemongrass sea bass
- Sea Bass Fillets – feel free to try with other white fish varieties such as cod, sea bream, tilapia, etc.
- Lemongrass –
- Red Chilli Flakes – to give it a nice little kick of heat
- Garlic – one of the aromatics
- Ginger – aromatics and also helps to dispel any fishy taste from the fish itself
- Fish Sauce – for adding an umami savoury edge of flavours
- Lime Juice – to add acidity
- Brown Sugar – a little bit of sweetness to balance out the flavours
- Kaffir Lime Leaves – to add a perfumy citrusy fragrance to the overall dish
- Fresh Coriander – using both leaves and stalk
- Cooking Oil – vegetable/sunflower seed oil
- Sea bass fillets are used as it’s convenient and readily available on the supermarket shelves. But it would work like a beauty if you can get your hands on a whole fish too!
- Lemongrass has some tough parts that need removing before it’s suitable for consumption. If you’re not familiar with how to handle lemongrass, see the link here for how to cut it.
- It’s not essential, but if you own a mortar & pestle, you can further mince the ingredients into a paste to rub over the sea bass.
- If time allows, let the sea bass fillets marinate in the ingredients for a short 5-15 minutes. This would allow the flavours to seep through but not over-marinating where the acid could change the texture of the fish. Marinate a little longer, at least 30 minutes, if using whole fish.
- Use fresh ginger and fresh garlic instead of those already minced in jars.
- This recipe features baking as the cooking method, but pan-frying would work too.
Baked Lemongrass Sea Bass Recipe
- 1 tsp Salt
- 180 g Sea Bass
- 2 stalks Lemongrass finely chopped
- 1 tsp Red Chilli Flakes
- 3 cloves Garlic minced
- 10 g Ginger grated
- 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 1½ tbsp Fish Sauce
- 1½ tbsp Lime Juice
- 1 tbsp Cooking Oil (Vegetable/Sunflower Seed)
- 10 g Fresh Coriander Leaves & Stalk
- 5 pieces Kaffir Lime Leaves roughly crumbled
- Fresh Chillies (optional) for garnish
- Rub salt over the sea bass fillets. Place the fillets, skin-side down, onto a lined baking tray.
- Mix togther all the remaining ingredients and pour evenly over the fish fillets. Set aside and let marinate for 5-15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 180°C. Place baking tray into the middle rack of the oven and bake for 20 minutes until the fish is cooked through. Serve immediately.
- Feel free to swap out the seabass with other white fish varieties such as cod, etc.
- Using fresh ginger and garlic is highly recommended to bring out the best of flavours.
- Make sure you remove the tough outer layers of the lemongrass before chopping and cooking.
- If time allows, let the sea bass fillets marinate in the ingredients for a short 5-15 minutes. This would allow the flavours to seep through but not over-marinating where the acid could change the texture of the fish. If using whole fish, do marinate a little longer for about 30 minutes.
- It’s not essential but if you own a mortar & pestle, you can further mince the ingredients into a paste to rub over the sea bass.
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