Asian Style Snapper/Bream in Banana Leaves

Recipe by The Flying Chef

You can make this with snapper or bream and it works equally as well, I have made with both, last night I made it with bream. Banana leaves a great way to cook fish especially if cooking the fish on the BBQ, I cooked it in the oven last night. I served this with Asian style vegetables and I cooked 2 fish,of about 750g a piece to serve 4 or if your fish are smaller you can cook 4 individual fillets. Cooking times are based on my oven temperature, not a BBQ and you will have to adjust if doing them on the BBQ, mine gets very hot and cooks about 5-10 Min's quicker on the BBQ, if cooking on the BBQ, cook with a covered BBQ, using indirect heat.

Top Review by Fairy Nuff

Absolutely wonderful recipe! I've been looking for so long to find a recipe for whole fish that suits our tastes...this one is perfect. I used a one and a half kilo bream (partner caught him yesterday so he was as fresh as can be!) and followed the recipe as written, apart from using parchment in place of banana leaves. I have a fairly new oven that I'm still getting used to and think I may have overcooked a little (cooked for 30 minutes). Loved the flavours! Loved the accompanying side vegetables! An excellent recipe that we will not only use often but will pass on to our fish loving friends!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Using tongs dip each banana leaf one by one into boiling water, remove immediately, rinse under cold water, dry thoroughly, leaves should be soft and pliable.
  2. Cut each fish 3 times, place each fish on a leaf, top each fish with lemon grass and garlic.
  3. Combine garlic, juice, sauces and oil, drizzle a little sauce over each fish reserving about 3-4 tablespoons for the vegeatbles.
  4. Fold leaves over fish and secure with kitchen string. Place parcels in a pre-heated oven of 180 degress celsius and cook for 25-30 min's or until cooked through.
  5. Alternativley which I love banana leaves for, cook on the BBQ, covered, using indirect heat for about 20-25 Min's. (I find it takes me 30 Min's in my oven and about 20 Min's on the BBQ, but I do have an extremely hot BBQ, I do not know how 4 smaller fish fillets affects the time as I have only cooked 2 larger fish.).
  6. The banana leaves will get quite crispy and may even burn in places, they will stay quite moist underneath as the juices run from fish and sauce. For presentation purposes I keep 2 banana leaves to use as the base to serve fish on after.
  7. Vegetables.
  8. Heat olive oil in a wok or large pan, add garlic and ginger and stir fry until fragrant.
  9. Add pepper, carrot and sesame oil, stir fry 2-3 Minutes, add both cabbages, peas, sprouts and reserved sauce. Stir fry until vegetables are just tender serve immediately with fish.
  10. Extra sauce.
  11. Just an optional extra if you prefer to have a little more sauce to drizzle over fish once served.
  12. Combine the 3 ingredients in a small microwave safe bowl and microwave 30-45 seconds to just warm through.
  13. To Serve: I place a banana leaf on a serving platter top with whole fish, I pour remaining juice and sauce from the bananan leaf fish was cooked in over fish, and arrange the vegetables around the fish, garnish with sliced onions.

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