Food cooked in banana leaf or turmeric leaf gives you the best natural flavour especially fish.This method of cooking seals in the flavour and juice. It is healthy and no mess.


  • 1 kg whole Barramundi - cut into half and score fish on both sides for even cooking

  • 1½ tsp palm sugar or dark brown sugar

  • 1 egg -whisked - 70gm

  • salt to taste

  • juice of 1 lemon

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 1 tbsp tamarind paste

  • 1 cup warm water

  • a large piece of banana leaf or large turmeic leaf [Substitute: aluminum foil + greaseproof paper]

  • 2-4 toothpicks, soaked in water

  • 3-4 fresh kalamansi limes, cut into halves [Substitute: kaffir or Tahitian limes cut into wedges] [optional]

  • 1 onion, sliced, for garnish [optional]

  • A few sprigs fresh coriander leaves for garnish [optional]

  • 8 shallots, peeled or 1 big onion peeled

  • 4 garlic, peeled

  • 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled

  • 2 stalks lemongrass, tender ends only

  • 4-6 dried chilies, softened in hot water

  • 1½ tsp belacan, [dried shrimp paste] or Anchovy Extract Powder

  • 3 tbsp or to taste, chili paste or sambal olek


  • 1.

    Rub fish with lemon juice and salt, set aside for 10 mins

  • 2.

    In a small bowl, using your fingers, mix tamarind paste with warm water, strain, discard seeds, set aside

  • 3.

    Using a mortar & pestle or blender, grind shallots, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, dried chilies, belacan and chili paste

  • 4.

    Heat wok on high, add oil, stir-fry ground paste till quite toasted, 3-5 mins

  • 5.

    Add tamarind, sugar, salt to taste, reduce heat to med, simmer till sauce is thickened - similar to the consistency of thick cream

  • 6.

    Remove from heat, allow sauce to cool

  • 7.

    Add egg and mix well

  • 8.

    Soften banana leaf or turmeric leaf in hot water, dry well with a tea towel, lightly coat with vegetable oil

  • 9.

    Spoon and spread half the sauce on the banana leaf or turmeric leaf, lay the fish on top, spoon the rest of the sauce on the fish

  • 10.

    Fold the banana leaf or turmeric leaf into a packet, secure with toothpicks

  • 11.

    Grill on a hot charcoal bbq grill or indoor grill or stovetop grill pan, 10-15 mins, depending on the thickness of the fish, turn over once

  • 12.

    Garnish with sliced onions, coriander leaves and lime wedges

  • 13.

    Serve hot with steamed rice or a fresh salad

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (4 servings)

  • Energy 512kj
  • Fat Total 13g
  • Saturated Fat 2g
  • Protein 57g
  • Carbohydrate 48g
  • Sugar 16g
  • Sodium 1396mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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The sauce for the fish has to be thick and not watery or else you will be steaming the fish instead of BBQing.

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Posted by SonitaReport
Sounds good can't wait to give it a try