Shanghai Style Crispy Fish (Xun Yu in Chinese)

I have been to Shanghai many times and like Shanghai Food very much, especially this Shanghai Style Crispy Fish. It is called Xun Yu in Chinese, which means Smoked Fish, in fact it isn’t smoked but fried in deep oil, it is easy to cook. Normally Shanghainese use Carp to cook, you can also use SPANISH MACKEREL, it’s even better.


1   3 lb. SPANISH MACKEREL, cut into 1/2 inch steak, bone in, skin on.
8   Tbsp. dark soy sauce
3   Tbsp. Shaoxing Cooking wine or red wine
1   Tbsp. Vinegar
1   Tbsp Sesame oil
1   star anise
1   Tsp. Chili powder (optional)
1/2 Tsp. White pepper powder
1/2 Tsp. Five spice powder
1   Tbsp. Brown sugar
1   Tsp. Salt(optional)
1   1 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1   1 piece spring onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
1   1 cup vegetable oil


  • Clean the fish steak and drain it.
  • Put all the ingredient except fish steak and vegetable oil into a pot, boil it, stirring often, over low, about 2- 3 min. Transfer the cooked source into a bowl.
  • In a small pot, heat the cooking oil, over mediate to mediate-high, about 2 min.
  • Fry the fish steak in deep oil, over mediate to mediate-high, turn fish steak occasionally until lightly  browned and crispy, about 5 min.
  • Take the fried fish steak out of oil and put it immediately into cooked source completely , turn once and take out, now it’s ready for serving.


Cool Tips:
1. To drain the fish steak well is very important; you can also use kitchen paper to drain it.
2. To use small pot for frying in deep oil can save vegetable oil.
Shanghai Style Crispy Fish is crispy outside and soft inside, it’s a bit salty and sweet, perfect with red wine, try it! Every time I go to Shanghai, I must have it, the taste is a good memory of Shanghai,  I love it!


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