Weekend Herb Blogging – Ginger

Among my many culinary challenges this year is cooking more elaborately, trying out different food, and face the unknown. Probably more like eat the unknown than face it.

Ginger doesn’t classify as unknown. Cuisines all over the world use ginger, and I love the taste of it. Apparently it originated in Southeast Asia or China, and references to ginger date as far back as the 3rd century. Now that’s heritage!

It then traveled the world, being spotted in ancient Egypt and Persia. Greeks and Romans used it because of its medicinal qualities. By the 11th century ginger reached England and in the 14th century it became a delicacy put on wealthy dinner tables along with the salt and pepper. Its valued increased so much that a pound of ginger cost as much as a whole sheep. Not that at any time I see myself buying a whole sheep, but I guess different times, different customs.

Back to modern times, and every day life in Brussels. It’s cold and to be perfectly honest, miserable outside. It rains, then it changes to snow, then it rains again, and at a certain point you are not sure anymore. And then it starts all over again. The only comfort is that cooking has never been more of a pleasure and staying in, enjoying home cooked dinners is bliss.

Of course if it would be up to me, I’ll be eating stodgy one-pot dinners every day. But there are clothes to fit in, sales are over, and my brain knows spring is not that far away. Which means less meat, more fish.

Having bought fresh fish, we decided to go all the way out. After some consultation of the ‘inspirational’ cooking books we addressed our trusted friend, the Internet. On BBC Food, a constant source of recipes, we came across a recipe on steamed fish with ginger. The recipe was put together for ‘Honey We’re Killing The Kids’ a show on bad eating habits and frightening perspectives on the impact food has on children. There is your argument for steamed fish!

1 piece of white fish (cod, haddock, plaice, etc), per person
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp white wine
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 pieces fresh ginger, sliced thinly
2 medium onions, finely chopped

Line a steamer with baking paper then place the fish in a single layer into the steamer. Mix the oil, soy, wine and garlic in a bowl and pour the liquid over the fish. Finally, scatter onion and ginger on top.Place the steamer over a pan of simmering water. Steam for about five minutes, or until the fish is cooked through.

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  • Kalyn

    Brussels still sounds like a romantic place to be to me, even if it’s cold and rainy. But I agree with you completely that saying in and cooking is the perfect thing to do when the weather is like that. Your fish sounds wonderful. I’ve had steamed fish in Asian restaurants, but haven’t attempted it at home. (So many things to cook, so little time!)

  • Ruth

    Ginger is my all time favorite spice (well, besides garlic that is) and steamed fish with it sounds awesome. Thanks for sharing.

  • chili&vanilia

    Andreea, this sounds lovely. I can smell the fragrance coming out of the steam right now! I’m going to try this one!

  • Andreea

    Kalyn – Brussels has its romantic moments 🙂
    Ruth – would have to agree with garlic being no. 1, but ginger is right there at the top.
    Zsofi – let me know how it turns out.
    Glad you all liked the recipe!

  • MM

    Steamed fish and ginger is a fabulous combo. Steaming it in a bamboo steamer is definitely the way to go. If you can get hold of lotus or banana leaves to line the bambo steamer, that will give an added dimension to your fish! I’m getting very hungry now just looking at the photo.

  • Andreea

    Stephanie, thank you for the tips. Not sure if i can find lotus leaves around, but i think banana leaves should be ok. Will have to give it a go again i guess 🙂

  • chili&vanilia

    Tried it, posted about it, wonderful. Thank you Andreea!!

  • Andreea

    zsofi, i am so glad you tried it out. looks really nice on your blog. i still have to try the banana leave option