I had never heard of ‘five spice’. I learned that it was a VERY common mixture used in Chinese cooking but also found in other Asian and Arabian dishes.
An interesting history tidbit: although you would think that the name 5-spice comes from the number of ingredients it is actually a reference to the five elements: wood, fire, earth, metal and water. In traditional Chinese medicine, herbs and spices have been used for thousands of years to restore balance in the elements.
Basa is a light tasting cat-fish native to Indochina. While it is imported, testing agencies have found no toxins in this type of fish.
Rather than pay for a larger container of five-spice blend. We went to our local bulk-food store and bought the ‘five’ spices by tsp. That way, they were fresh and used up what we needed. We served our Basa with a side of Sugar Peas and Homemade Scalloped Potatoes.
Prep Time: 20 minutes Slow Cooker Time: 1 hours Serves: 4
- 400-500g Basa fillets
- 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar (optional)
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 3 scallions, thinly
Ingredients for ‘make your own’ five spice blend:
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp fennel seed
- 1/2 tsp ground star anise
- 1/2 tsp Szechuan Peppercorn
Sprinkle both sides of Basa fillets with five-spice powder. Combine soy sauce and brown sugar in a small bowl. Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the Basa and cook 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, turn the fish over, stir the soy mixture and pour into the pan. Bring the sauce to a boil and cook until the fish is cooked through and the sauce has thickened slightly, about 2 minutes more. Add scallions and remove from the heat. Drizzle the fish with pan sauce.
Darling Daughter’s Notes: Basa is delicious and the spices were different. Not hot, not too sweet… just right. I could have had more fish!
Suggested Nutritional Values (1 portion): Calories 156, Protein 22g, Carbohydrates 5g, Dietary Fiber 1g, Sugars 3g, Total Fat 6g, Cholesterol 47mg, Sodium 579mg
Great Mineral Bonuses: Omega 3 DHA 106mg, Selenium 81%, Vitamin B1263%, Niacin 32%, Vitamin K 30%, Phosphorus 27%
Diabetes Type 2 Suggestions: Leave out the brown sugar and be sure to use reduced sodium soy sauce. Otherwise this is an excellent low-cal, low-carb, low-sugar, high-healthy fats supper solution.