Fish Amok

Cambodian Fish Amok img_3050

Fish amok is the national dish of Cambodia and once you taste it you’ll know why. It is deliciously creamy yet surprisingly light,  and quite mild when compared to neighboring Thai or Vietnamese curries. “Amok” refers to the process of steam cooking a curry in banana leaves, or in this case the delicious placed inside.


Bar Fish or Whitefish | 100 g or 3.5 oz. or chicken, cut into long thin strips
Ngor Leaves | thinly sliced into long strips (replace with Bok Choy or Spinach leaves)
Coconut Cream | ½ C
*Chili Powder | 1 TB (Replace with 1 TB fresh deseeded chili pounded into paste)
Turmeric Powder | 1 TB
Galangal | 1 small piece, minced (looks like ginger but not as potent)
Lemongrass | 1 stick (or less), chopped very small
Garlic | 1 clove, minced
Fish Sauce | 1 tsp (replace with oyster sauce for a less fishy taste)
Oil | 1 TB
Shrimp Paste | ½ tsp
Shallot | 1, minced
Water | ¼ C
Salt | ½ tsp (can be omitted- shrimp paste and fish sauce are very salty)
Sugar | 1 tsp
Kaffir Lime Leaf | 1, cut into thin strips (can use regular lime leaf but it will be more potent)
Egg | 1
Vegetable Stock Powder | ½ tsp (can replace for ½ chicken bouillon for chicken amok)
Jasmine or Fragrant White Rice | 1 C, cooked (1/4 C dry per serving)


1. In a rice cooker or over stovetop begin to prepare rice ( ¼ C dry)
2. While rice is cooking make Amok paste
3. Slice and chop the lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaf, garlic, and shallot until they are almost minced
4. Using a mortar and pestle pound until they are very fine**
5. Add turmeric powder, shrimp paste, dried chili and continue to pound until they are well mixed and a paste-like consistency is produced-This is your Amok Paste
6. Finish cooking rice and set aside
7. Heat 1 TB oil in a pot over low heat
8. Add your herb paste and stir until it’s fragrant
9. Add water as your pot becomes dry- Note: you will end up adding all of the water to ensure you have enough liquid and your pot does not get too dry
10. Add ½ of the coconut cream and Nagor or Bock Choy leaves
11. and when it boils add fish or chicken, and Ngor leaves and cook on low until fish is cooked- Note: fish will cook very quickly and end up almost disappearing into the dish
12. Add vegetable or chicken stock, fish sauce, sugar, salt and the remaining coconut cream
13. When fish is cooked through, and ingredients are well blended to create a yellow cream-like soup (bits of ingredients here and there are normal if you pounded your own paste) Add one whole egg into pot and swirl to combine
14. You should begin to see the white of the egg appear
15. When egg is cooked just enough where you have swirls throughout your dish, remove from heat
16. Serve plate with a cup of rice and Amok in a small soup bowl, pour it right on top the rice and enjoy!

*Chili can be omitted for a non-spicy dish
**This can also be done with a food processor but you get the authentic feel and enjoyment out of creating your own paste. Somehow it taste better when you worked hard to make it 😛




Start Pounding! 








Paste When done 


What it should look like 


Finished Product…



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