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Fish Head Stew with Bamboo Shoots Soup (鱼头炖篙笋汤)

Fish Head Stew with Bamboo Shoots Soup (鱼头炖篙笋汤)

This is a flavorful Chinese soup that combines the rich taste of fish head with the crisp texture of bamboo shoots. It's a nourishing and comforting dish often enjoyed in Chinese households.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese


  • 1 large fish head such as salmon or carp, cleaned and cut into pieces
  • 200 g fresh bamboo shoots peeled and sliced
  • 1 piece of ginger sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 green onions chopped
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine Chinese cooking wine
  • 1.5 liters water or fish stock
  • Salt and white pepper to taste
  • Fresh cilantro for garnish


Prepare the Fish Head:

  • Rinse the fish head thoroughly under cold water to remove any blood or impurities. Pat dry with paper towels.

Blanch the Bamboo Shoots:

  • If using fresh bamboo shoots, bring a pot of water to a boil and blanch the bamboo shoots for about 2-3 minutes. This helps to remove any bitterness. Drain and set aside.

Sauté Aromatics:

  • Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat.
  • Add the ginger slices and minced garlic, and sauté until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes.

Add the Fish Head:

  • Add the fish head pieces to the pot and cook for about 3-4 minutes, turning occasionally, until they are lightly browned.

Deglaze and Add Liquid:

  • Add the Shaoxing wine and soy sauce to deglaze the pot, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom.
  • Pour in the water or fish stock and bring to a boil.

Simmer the Soup:

  • Reduce the heat to low and add the blanched bamboo shoots.
  • Let the soup simmer gently for about 30-40 minutes, or until the fish head is tender and the flavors are well combined.

Season the Soup:

  • Taste the soup and season with salt and white pepper to your preference.

Garnish and Serve:

  • Add the chopped green onions and fresh cilantro to the soup just before serving.
  • Serve hot, ideally with steamed rice or as part of a larger meal.

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