Deep Fried Silver-Banded Whiting (Sillago) with Sambal Belacan

Deep Fried Silver-Banded Whiting (Sillago) with Sambal Belacan

Recipe from mycookhnghut,com

Notes from the author: Sillago, also known as silver-banded whiting, can easily be obtained in South East Asia. The flesh is fine and smooth, and it doesn’t contain small bones. It is one of my dad’s favourites! One best way to cook silver-banded whiting is to shallow-frying. I haven’t tried other ways of cooking them, but, so far, shallow-frying is my favourite.


  • 300ml sunflower oil
  • 500g silver-banded whiting, cleaned and gutted
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • salt and pepper
  • Sambal Belacan
  • 2 tsp shrimp paste
  • 40g green chillies, deseeded and chopped
  • 60g red chillies, deseeded and chopped
  • 1 juice of lime
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • a pinch of salt

Step by step:

  1. To make sambal belacan, firstly, toast the shrimp paste.
  2. You can do this by dry frying for a few minutes in a pan until it becomes dry and powdery.
  3. You can also wrap up with a foil and put in the oven and roast for 5 – 7 minutes at 180ºC. Leave to cool.
  4. You can use a mortar and pestle to grin the chilli or using a food processor. Put all the chopped chillies and roasted shrimp paste, grind until become a smooth paste.
  5. Transfer to a bowl, mix with lime juice, sugar and salt. Serve desired amount in a small bowl, you can keep the unused sambal belacan in the fridge for a few days.
  6. Heat the sunflower oil in a wok or big deep saucepan.
  7. Meanwhile, season the silver-banded whiting with salt and pepper and lightly coat with plain flour, set aside.
  8. When the oil is hot enough (put a bamboo chopstick into the oil and when bubbles start to form around it, then it is hot enough), slowly put in the fish.
  9. Fry 7-8 at a time, fry in batches, until they turn golden brown.
  10. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
  11. Keep warm and repeat for the rest. Serve with sambal belacan.


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