Peter Kuruvita’s whole steamed coral trout with ginger

This November, chef Peter Kuruvita returns to SBS with Coastal Kitchen.

In this new six-part series, Peter explores Queensland’s iconic locations and fertile growing regions. Click here to find out all about Coastal Kitchen.

Here’s one of the recipes Peter cooks on the show, using coral trout caught just the day before and purchased at the Noosa Farmers’ Market.

Whole steamed coral trout with ginger, habanero, shallot, and peanut glaze

  • Serves: 4
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 40 minutes
  • Level of difficulty: mid.

Coral trout is the sweetest fish around, so treat it with care and respect. The classic Cantonese method of steaming is the best way to bring out the lip-smacking flavour and texture of this majestic fish.


  • 1 whole plate-sized coral trout, scaled and cleaned


  • ¼ bunch shallots
  • 100g ginger
  • 10 garlic cloves
  • 4 habanero chillies
  • 1 bunch coriander


  • 100ml sweet Chinese rice wine
  • 50ml sesame oil
  • 200ml light soy sauce

To serve

  • 200ml peanut oil
  • 50g white sugar


Prepare the fish

  • Put a large tray of water on the stove with the roots from the shallots, coriander, ginger and garlic peelings, and a splash of sesame oil, cover and bring to the boil.
  • Rub the fish with sesame oil, place on a grill or baking rack and cover with foil. Place on top of the large tray of water to make a steamer. Cook for 10 minutes.

Prepare the garnish

  • Shred the shallots on a sharp angle, roughly chop some coriander, julienne the ginger, finely slice the garlic and quarter the habernaro chilli and combine in a bowl.
  • After 10 minutes, remove the fish from the steamer and dress with half the garnish mix.
  • Recover with the foil and return to the steamer for another three minutes.

Prepare the sauce

  • Heat the peanut oil on the stove – it needs to be smoking when you pour it over the trout in the next step.
  • Mix the sweet Chinese rice wine, sesame oil and light soy sauce in a saucepan and heat through.

To serve

  • When the trout is cooked, transfer to a platter and spread the rest of the garnish over the top. Stir the sauce well and drizzle over the garnish and trout. Sprinkle with the sugar.
  • Pour the hot peanut oil over the trout, caramelising the sugar and allowing all of the flavours to combine.
  • Garnish with coriander.


The peanut oil must have aroma and flavour. Regular supermarket versions have neither, so head to an Asian supermarket to buy the real thing.