Monchong, also called sickle pomfret, is a deep-water fish that shows up in markets mostly as a by-catch. It’s delicate, and delicious, and flakes nicely when cooked properly. High oil content means a great texture & good flavor affinity with acidic sauces. I’ve sautéed it in this recipe, and added a colorful tropical slick to make it fun. Don’t be alarmed by the pineapple & banana in the sauce recipe; when it’s all whipped up, even supertasters (people who have above average perception of certain flavors,) aren’t sure exactly what’s in it!
Sautéed Monchong with Green Maui SauceLime Cilantro Sauce
makes about 1-1/2 cups juice of 2 limes (about 1/3 cup)
1 cup firmly packed cilantro, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, pithed & minced (about 2 tablespoons)
2 cloves garlic, pressed
1/4 cup whole-milk plain yogurt
1/3 cup chopped banana
1/3 cup chopped pineapple
Combine all ingredients in blender or small food processor and puree.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1-1/2 lb monchong filet, cut into strips (1 inch x 4 inches or so)
Heat olive oil & butter in nonstick skillet over high heat until almost smoking. Add monchong and cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Flip pieces and repeat. Serve with Green Maui Sauce (see above). Garnish with pickled Maui onions & ogo seaweed. Or parsley.