Sour Fish Head Soup for One (Canh Chua Dau Ca

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Title: Sour Fish Head Soup for One (Canh Chua Dau Ca
Yield: 4 Servings
Categories: Vietnamese, Soups, Seafood


Stephen Ceideburg
2 Scallions, white part only,
-crushed with the side of a
Sprinkling of freshly ground
-black pepper
2 ts Salt
2 tb Plus 4 teaspoons fish sauce
-(nuoc mam)
1 lg Fish head or fish carcass,
-split down the center
1 qt Water
1/2 c Canned sliced sour bamboo
1/4 Fresh pineapple, cut in a
-lengthwise section and
1 ds MSG (optional)
2 tb Mixed chopped fresh
-coriander (Chinese parsley)
- and green scallions

An excellent way to get twice the pleasure out of your fish purchase. You
can use either the fish head or the fish carcass if you wish. To the people
of South Viet Nam, this is as much their traditional dish as Southern Fried
Chicken is to our southerners--and it will meet with instant praise.

Sprinkle the scallions, black pepper, 1 teaspoon salt, and 4 teaspoons fish
sauce over the fish head. Allow to stand for 10 to 15 minutes.

Bring 1 quart of water to a boil and drop in the sour bamboo and pineapple
slices. Cook at a lively boil for 5 minutes. Drop fish head into the
actively boiling water and, keeping at a boil, add the 2 tablespoons fish
sauce, remaining teaspoon salt, and a dash of MSG. Boil the fish head for a
total of 10 minutes. Transfer to a soup tureen, sprinkle on the coriander
and scallion green, and serve.

Note: If the fish head is dropped into water that is not boiling, it will
fall apart.

From "The Classic Cuisine of Vietnam", Bach Ngo and Gloria Zimmerman,
Barron's, 1979.

This is real good with chunks of catfish, shrimp, whatever...

From Gemini's MASSIVE MealMaster collection at