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Paper steamed mackerel with hot and sour chilli dressing

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 8 minutes

Serves: 2

Skill level: Competent Cook

Recipe by: Billingsgate Seafood School      



  • 4 mackerel fillets, pin-boned
  • 1 stick lemon grass, roughly chopped
  • 2.5cm piece ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 1 red chilli, sliced (seeds left in)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing

  • Juice and zest of 2 limes
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon tamarind paste
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced

To serve

  • Noodles
  • Sprigs of coriander
  • Lime wedges


  1. Heat the oven to 220C. Heat a large baking sheet in the oven too.
  2. Cut out 2 large heart shaped pieces of good quality baking parchment.
  3. Put mackerel fillets flesh to flesh, on one side of the paper. Sprinkle with lemon grass, ginger and red chilli slices. Fold the paper to seal in the mackerel, but pinching the edges together.
  4. Put the wrapped paper-cases on the heated baking sheet and bake in the oven for 8 minutes.
  5. In the meantime mix the dressing ingredients together. Arrange to have some noodles to hand for serving.
  6. After 8 minutes lift the paper cases from the oven and tear them open. Spoon the hot and sour sauce over the mackerel in their cases and sprinkle with sprigs of coriander. Lift the paper cases onto a serving dish and hand the noodles separately and garnish with coriander and lime wedges

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