Winse Chan is a rising chef from Scotland and soon to be author of a cookbook about classic and authentic Chinese recipes, passed down from generations and inherited from the women who have influenced her cooking. She is currently working with Nee Hao Magazine to bring you a series of exclusive mouth watering recipes for you to try cooking at home.
Fish balls are popular snacks all over China, Hong Kong as well as Malaysia and Singapore. There are two types known as the yellow street food version and the white restaurant version. I have decided to make the white version for the healthier, cleaner taste with no additives.
White fish ball restaurant version- are made from better quality fish. The fish balls are larger in size and its main ingredients are white fish with no additives, boiled to retain its natural clean flavour. Served at Chinese cafes, restaurants and eaten as a compliment with noodles, added to soups, mixed with vegetables or for hotpots.
Choice of fish- You can use any type of white fish. I prefer to use either cod or haddock.
Note:- A good white fish ball should be light, fluffy, and have an elastic springy texture. You do not want soft and mushy balls, but one with a spring to it! To achieve this texture you must lift the blended fish paste whilst smacking it down on the work surface like you are really angry! Repeat this 30-40 times. This should make the fish balls springy and light in texture.
You will need to firm up the smacked down fish paste in the fridge for an hour before rolling into balls.
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cooking Time: 9 minutes
Fridge time: 1 hour
Ingredients for Fish balls
500 grams white fish
50 ml cold water
2 teaspoons corn flour
½ teaspoon salt
4 dashes white pepper powder
Ingredients for Soup
1 ½ litres hot boiling water
200 grams mung bean noodles
1 bunch pak choi
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon chicken powder
2 sprigs spring onion
1 red Thai chilli, seeded and sliced
1 thick slice of ginger
Chopped spring onions and thinly sliced chillies
Soak mung bean noodles for 10 minutes in hot boiling water, drain, rinse under cold water, drain and set aside.
Place ingredients for fish balls into a food processor. Blend until it forms a smooth paste. Remove the paste onto a lightly floured surface. Lift the paste and keep on smacking it down on the work surface. Repeat this 30-40 times. This should make the fish balls springy and light in texture.
Place into fridge for 1 hour. Mould into bite size balls with your hands. Set aside.
Pour hot boiling water into a pot, add soy sauce, sesame oil, chicken stock, chilli, ginger and whole sprigs of spring onions. Boil at a medium heat setting for 2 minutes. Gently drop in the fish balls and boil for 5 minutes.
Wash pak choi, cut into thick strips, add into pot, follow by adding in noodles and simmer on a low heat for 2 minutes.
Ladle into bowls and scatter with optional extras. Enjoy!