Thai Fish and Seafood Recipes

There are two fish recipes on this page. One is a simple recipe for grilling fish Thai-style and the other is our simple home recipe for the spicy and sour southern curry Gaeng Som Plaa.

Thai Grilled or Baked Fish

fish market in South East AsiaMilk fish is imported frozen from Taiwain and the Phillipines into the U.S. It is great for grilling or baking, because of its oily flesh. Don't serve to very young children, because there are many small hairlike bones in some parts of the flesh. Sometimes, it is possible to find the fish already boned. Look for it in the freezer section of your local Asian market.



Thaw out the fish overnight in the refrigerator. Wash off with cool water. Scale the fish, outdoors if possible, near a water source. Hold the cleaver at 30 degree angle to scrape off the scales, scraping away from yourself. Make a 3-inch incision at the stomach area, near the bottom edge of the fish. Remove the guts and discard. Leave the head and fin intact. Wash thoroughly.

Make 3 gashes with the knife on each side of the fish. Sprinkle with sea salt. Let rest 10 minutes.

Take a sheet of large sized heavy duty aluminum foil. Place the fish on top. Pour over the oyster sauce, soy sauce and sugar. Wrap and crimp the the edges of the foil on top to seal shut.

Grill over hot coals for 50 minutes. Or bake in a 350 degree oven for 40 minutes. Check doneness by flaking the flesh with a fork. When cooked the flesh should be flaky and white, not opaque. The fish should smell fragrant.

Let rest for 10 minutes. Serve in the foil, on top of a large platter decorated with green or red leaf lettuce or kale. Serve with Thai jasmine rice. Serves 4 to 6.

Thai Sour Curry Fish (Gaeng Sohm Plah)

This is from my innovative Thai husband employing on-hand ingredients.


  • 7 small oval flat fish (we used pond fish we caught ourselves!); clean but leave head and bones intact; salt generously with sea salt and let rest 1 hour or overnight
  • 1 4 oz. can sour curry paste
  • 7 pepperoncini salad peppers, cut in half
  • 3 oz. of the pickling liquid from the pepperoncini
  • Fish sauce to taste


Mix the curry paste in a small bowl with 1/2 cup water to dilute. Put fish in small cooking pot. Add the diluted curry paste. Add just enough water to cover the fish, the amount depends on the size of the fish. Don't add too much water.

Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium high, cooking at a low boil. (Not simmer!)

Add the pepperoncini and the pickling liquid. Boil until the fish is opaque, just cooked.

Taste and add fish sauce to taste.

Add a little less curry paste if you prefer it less spicy. Serves 3 to 4.

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