Chili and Garlic Fried Fish (Grouper) Filets


This recipe is inspired from the ‘salt and pepper X’ (where X is any sort of fried protein) type dishes that can be found at most tze char stalls and in some Taiwanese restaurants. While ‘salt and pepper X’ taste great, I wanted to develop something that suits my Singaporean taste buds better! 🙂 What is better than chili and garlic in addition to the salt and pepper? *woopwoop* This is actually my uncle’s creation and he is a genius!


  • 1 pound 1/8″ sliced grouper filets (or any other fish)
  • 8 slices ginger
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • approximately 5 cups of oil for frying

Ingredients for Batter

  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar

Ingredients for Chili and Garlic seasoning

  • 1 head (not bulb!) of garlic, minced
  • 1 red chili, seeds removed and minced
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon five spice powder (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons oil


Marinate the fish filets with the sliced ginger, sesame oil, salt and pepper for 30 minutes.

Prepare the marinade by mixing all ingredients of the marinade together.

Prepare two plates lined with kitchen towels to place the fish slices after frying.


In a pot, add oil and turn on the heat. The oil is hot enough when a tiny drop of batter bubbles when dropped in.

Dip each slice of fish in the batter, then fry it in the oil until one side is golden brown. (Do not overcrowd the pan or the fish slices will stick together. Fry the fish in batches.)

Turn the fish over with chopsticks, then fry until the other side is golden brown.

Remove from oil and place onto the plate lined with kitchen towels.

Continue to fry the fish in batches until all the slices have been fried.


To make the crispy garlic topping, add oil to another pan on medium heat. When the oil is hot enough, add the minced garlic and chili.

Fry until the garlic is golden brown, then remove the garlic from the oil and drain on another plate lined with kitchen towel. Let cool.

When the garlic has cooled, add salt, sugar, pepper and five spice powder.

Toss this mixture with the fried fish slices, and sprinkle some more on top of the fish slices when serving.

Serve and enjoy.


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