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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat
    dirtydog's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
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    Pattaya Jomtien

    Pla Daeng Red Snapper

    Pla Daeng or Red Snapper as it is known as outside of Thailand is probably one of my favourite fish from tropical waters, comes in nice sizes so your not picking at tiny little bits of fillet etc all the time, got to watch out for all the bones and just look at those nasty spiky fins on it, don't want them stuck in your throat, but apart from that it is a fine fish for eating.

    Pla Daengs proper name is bplaa grà pong daeng kîeow, but if your ordering in a Thai restaurant just stick to pla daeng and they will know what you want, normally it is either baked as a whole fish, grilled as a whole fish, BBQued as a whole fish, or even boiled as a whole fish, most sea side resorts you will find them pre-cooked and ready to eat from the food stalls, normal prices if memory serves me correct is from 80baht to 120baht, although they will have larger ones at more expensive prices, but you will need to bring your family to help eat those ones

    A confusing aspect in Thailand regarding red snapper is the Thai fresh water version which is called pla tup tim, so, Pla Daeng for the sea water red snapper, and Pla Tub Tim for the fresh water version, very similar taste, and very similar nice white flesh fillet, try them both and tell us your thoughts on them.

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cook Time: 25 minutes

    Total Time: 35 minutes

    • SERVES 2-4, depending on the size and number of fish used
    • 1 whole red snapper or gray mullet, OR 2 or more whole rainbow trout or tilapia, fresh or frozen
    • generous handful fresh coriander
    • handful fresh basil
    • lemon slices or wedges for serving
    • tin foil or banana leaves (if cooking in the oven)
    • 4 Tbsp. oyster sauce
    • 4 Tbsp. soy sauce
    • 8-10 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
    • 1 Tbsp. fish sauce
    • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
    • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
    • 1 Tbsp. lime or lemon juice
    • 1-3 red chilies, sliced, OR 2+ tsp. Thai chili sauce (adjust the amount according to how spicy you'd like your fish)

    If using frozen fish, be sure to thaw it thoroughly before cooking. This can be done quickly by soaking fish in a bowl or sink of cool water. If your fish hasn't been cleaned: Make a cut along the underside of fish from the head to 3/4 of the way towards the tail. Reach inside to remove guts and discard. Rinse fish inside and out. Remove scales by scraping a large knife along the fish's surface, scraping from tail toward head until most of the scales have been removed.
    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees, OR warm up your barbecue/grill.
    2. Stir all marinade/sauce ingredients together in a bowl. Set aside.
    3. Place fish on a cutting board and score it by making vertical cuts an inch or more apart along the length of fish from head to tail. Turn fish over and do the same on the other side.
    4. If Grilling the Fish: See below. For Baked Fish: Place fish on a large piece of tin foil or banana leaf. Make sure the foil or leaf is big enough to cover/wrap the fish. (For more information on banana leaf, see my: All About Cooking With Banana Leaves.)
    5. Drizzle 3 Tbsp. (or more) of the marinade/sauce over each fish, covering both sides. Be sure to spoon some into the cuts you've made, as well as into the underside cavity. Reserve the rest for later.
    6. Bring the long sides of the foil up and over the fish, scrunching it together. Try to keep the foil off the surface of the fish, making a kind of shallow tent over it. Also fold up each end and scrunch to secure. If using banana leaf: Simply fold the sides and ends of the leaf over fish to cover it. With banana leaf, you actually want the leaf to come into contact with the fish, as this adds to the flavor.
    7. Bake the fish (in foil) directly on your oven rack. Or - if you're worried about spillage, place wrapped fish on a baking sheet or tray and place in the oven. Fish wrapped in banana leaf will require a dish or tray, as banana leaf is permeable.
    8. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or longer, depending on the size and thickness of your fish.
    9. Remove fish from oven and check some of the deeper cuts to see if inner flesh is cooked (it should be opaque, not pink or translucent-looking). If fish still needs more time, return to your oven for another 8-10 minutes, or until cooked.
    10. To finish the fish, remove from oven and open up the foil, scrunching it around the fish to create a kind of bowl (see photo). For banana leaf, simply open up the leaf, which will have become drier and slightly crispy.
    11. Pour remaining marinade/sauce over fish and return to the oven. Turn oven on "Broil" setting, and broil for 5-8 minutes, or until the fish is nicely browned and crisp-looking (like barbecue fish). Banana leaves will become quite brown and fragrant.
    12. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the fish with fresh coriander and basil. Add lemon wedges or slices, and ENJOY!
    • To Barbecue Fish: Brush your grill with a little oil to keep fish from sticking (if using a fish cage, it also helps to brush it with oil).
    • Drizzle 3 Tbsp. (or more) of the marinade/sauce over each fish, covering both sides. Be sure to spoon some into the cuts you've made, as well as into the underside cavity.
    • Grill fish for 10-20 minutes (depending on the size and thickness of the fish, and the how hot your grill is). If barbecuing directly on the grill, allow fish to cook for at least 5 minutes before turning it the first time - otherwise the skin may stick to the grill and tear.
    • Use remaining marinade/sauce to baste as your barbecue, OR pour over fish right before serving. Fish is done when inner flesh is opaque and no longer pink or translucent. To serve, top with fresh coriander and basil, plus wedges of lime or lemon, and ENJOY!

    More Thai Recipes.

    Thai Food For Newbies

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    02-01-2017 @ 06:02 PM
    Thanks DD , I love his fish , and now I can do it myself.


  3. #3
    Thailand Expat
    Humbert's Avatar
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    May 2009
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    Today @ 05:37 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    Thailand regarding red snapper is the Thai fresh water version which is called pla tup tim
    I thought pla tup tim was Tilapia.

  4. #4
    Thailand Expat
    good2bhappy's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
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    11-11-2018 @ 05:44 PM
    Klong Samwa
    Isn't that Pla Nin?^

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat Boon Mee's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    13-05-2019 @ 03:36 PM
    Two different Tilapia. The pink colored is Pla Tup Tim & the darker one is Pla Nin.

  6. #6
    STARGASA's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
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    19-04-2018 @ 07:40 PM

    red snappers ummmm

    Bloody hell, i am just starting work here in uk on Mon morning, and i am looking at one of my favourite thai foods, love it, can`t wait to get back there.

    Dirty Dog i am lovin your posts, read em all great stuff, thanks for takin the time.

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