Tilapia Escabeche

  • 1 lb. tilapia, cleaned and gutted
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pc. medium-sized red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled and cut into strips
  • 1 pc. small red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 pc. small green bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 pc. carrot, peeled and cut into strips
  • ½ cup tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsps. soy sauce
  • ½ cup vinegar
  • 3-4 tbsps. brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. cornstarch, dissolved in ½ cup water
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ tsp. cumin powder
  • ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup cooking oil

  1. Rub the tilapia with salt and pepper. In a frying pan, heat oil and deep fry the fish until both sides turn golden brown. Set aside.
  2. In the same pan, remove excess oil and lightly sauté garlic, onion and ginger.
  3. Toss the carrots, red and green bell pepper, tomato sauce and soy sauce. Cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the water, vinegar and brown sugar. Do not stir until it began to boil.
  5. Lightly whisk in the dissolved cornstarch. Simmer for another 2 minutes or until the sauce thickens.
  6. Season with salt, pepper and cumin powder. Remove from heat.
  7. On a serving platter, put the cooked tilapia and douse over the thick sauce while steaming hot. Serve with hot steamed rice or fresh bread. Enjoy!

**Number of Servings: 2 to 3

  1. You may use any fish of your choice. I prefer tilapia because it is meaty and less bony.
  2. If your sauce turns too acidic, you may just add more water and sugar.
  3. Do not stir the vinegar before it boils or the sauce will smell like raw vinegar.
  4. You may opt to put the fried tilapia on the sauce and simmer for 2 more minutes or just pour over the sauce. I prefer the latter to retain some crispiness on the fish.
  5. You can have it served with fresh breads and sandwich vegetables like lettuce and tomatoes; or as an accompaniment to other staple foods such as rice, lentils or potatoes.

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