Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Whitebait Omelette

What is Whitebait?  Read about it in Wiki.  I have always known it to be called "Ngan Yee Chai" translated literally from cantonese will be "Silver Fish".  and when i googled for more info, i was horrified that the 'paramites' that we find in our old forgotten books are also called 'Silver Fish' - i have totally forgotten about these, perhaps at this age of computers, who goes to look for any info amongst the old books?   These Whitebaits are soft and tasty when fried or steamed with eggs but they can be scary, talking about westerners being afraid of fish eyes when served a whole cooked fish.  In this platter, there were hundreds and more, but they were so tiny, they were like specks and i told a lie by saying that they were cracked black pepper.  I got away with this lie and the dish was received with no complains, they licked the platter clean.


250 g/8 oz whitebait
3 eggs
1/4 cup chopped spring onions
2 tbsp cornstarch/tapioca starch
1 tbsp shaaxing wine
Salt and pepper to taste
oil for shallow frying

Cilantro/chopped spring onions for serving


Rinse the whitebait in a sieve, running cold water through them. Leave to drain.

Beat egg , cornstarch/tapioca starch, wine,salt  and pepper together until well mixed.

When ready to cook, mix in the whitebait and chopped spring onions.

Have the oil heated in a heavy frying pan or wok.

Pour egg and whitebait mixture into the hot oil and allow omelette to set until undersides are golden, then turn and cook other side.

Garnish with cilantro/chopped spring onins and serve hot with hot white rice.


Michelle said...

What a great idea! This would taste great with porridge! Thanks for the recipe!


kimberlycun said...

reminds me of those delicious pancakes found in korean restaurants. beautiful!

Aunt LoLo said...

Hehehe...that's really funny that you said the ngan yu jai eyes were pepper!! I think we call these fish "haam yu jai". My kids LOVE them. I steam them and top them with a little oil and soy sauce, and serve them as a "sung" with rice. YUM. i'll have to try this omelette! Thank you!

lilyng said...

aunt Lolo

In Malaysia there are these tiny fishes which are dried and in cantonese they are called 'Khong Yee Chai' - khong as in 'dried' and they are bigger fishes than 'ngan yee chai'. We don't know what they are called in english, so everytime at the Customs we will say that they are anchovies. Btw, in malay they are called 'ikan bilis'

ping said...

Oh my goodness! You crafty person! LOL!!! That was sooo good! It does look very delicious so I don't suppose they minded too much anyway :D

Anonymous said...

For this recipe - did u use the fresh type or the dried type of whitebait?


lilyng said...


i used the frozen whitebait.

Anonymous said...

Thks for info, Lily!;) Will be trying this recipe soon cos i have a box of frozen whitebait in my freezer. Ur whitebait omelette looks really delicious!


Bruce said...

Wow, 8oz of whitebait seemed like a lot for 3 eggs (maybe because I used dried). I used 4oz and it worked out fine. 8ozs of dried whitebait would have overwhelmed the pan

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