Claypot Fishhead – “Sha Guo Yu Tou”

I love fishhead cooked this way because it has so much goodies in the pot plus the gravy is simply irresistable!!


– 1 large good quality fishhead (halved and washed)

– 1 piece of pork belly thinly sliced and rub in some corn starch (you may also use roasted pork belly)

– Corn starch for dusting and deep frying fishhead

– Half the Chinese cabbage and roughly chopped (you can use the whole cabbage  if you prefer)

– 1 large carrot sliced

– 2 stalks of celery cut into chunks

– 1 small can of button mushrooms (Cut mushrooms into halves)

– Some baby corn (optional)

– One block of toufu, cubed (optional)

– Yam cut into chunks (optional)

– 2 inches of ginger thinly sliced

– 3 cloves of garlic diced

– Scallions and cilantro for garnishing

– 1 tbsp of Thai fishsauce (you may modify the amount depending on your liking)

– 1 tbsp of oyster sauce

– 1 1/2 cup of unsalted or lightly salted chicken stock

– 1 tsp of dark soy sauce (more if you like a darker sauce)

– 1 tsp of sesame oil

– 1 tbsp of chinese rice wine

– Oil for frying and cooking

–  White pepper and salt to be added to your liking

– Some water for simmering

– Corn starch for thickening the sauce slightly


– Heat up a fair amount of corn or peanut oil for deep frying the fishhead.

– Coat both half of the fishhead with cornstarch and fry them till slightly golden on each sides. Put 3 to 4 pieces of ginger slices in to fry as well.

– Set aside to drain of excess oil.

– ** If using toufu, you can continue to fry the toufu and set aside.

– Remove oil from the wok. Leave about 2 tbsp with the ginger behind for frying the vegetables and meat.

– Put in remaining ginger slices and garlic and fry till fragrant.

– Add pork belly, some dark soy sauce, fish sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine, sesame oil and stirfry for about 2 mins.

– Add the mushrooms, yam and all vegetables to the wok and stirfry for about 2 mins mixing the ingredients around.

– Add the chicken stock and cover to allow some simmering till vegetables and pork slices are soften.

– Add salt and white pepper to your liking.

– Meantime, place the fried fishhead and toufu in a large claypot or casserole, pour in the vegetable and gravy over the fishhead. You may need to add some hot water so that the gravy  fishhead will be partially covered.

– If you are not serving immediately, just cover the pot and set aside. Before serving, add some cornstarch mixture (about 2 tbsp or cornstarch to 1 tbsp of water) to thicken the sauce, allow to simmer and bring to a boil on low heat.

– Garnish with scallions and cilantro before serving.

This dish is delicious and you can prepare in advance to be served later. Yummy and easy!!

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