Goi Pa, Laotian Fish Salad

Goi Pa. A Laotian ceviche of some sort? Or is ceviche a South American version of Goi Pa?

Who cares? Its yummy :biggrin: and easy to make!

Like many Laotian salads or “Larbs”, Goi Pa is raw, or almost raw, cured and briefly marinated, it must be served as soon as its made.

You need fresh fish, I find white fish is the best for this dish, but you could use salmon or tuna, it really doesn’t matter, as long as the fish is fresh.

There are different ways to prepare this dish, this is my way. The fish is ever so briefly heated, glazed in its own juices actually, this gives it a wonderful texture, semi raw if you like. You have to try it to appreciate it.

This is a long post, with many photos (25 more to go!), but trust me, its easy to prepare.

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Two medium sized fish will serve 4 to 6 persons. Here I use Dorada (Gilt Head Bream). I would have preferred to use Sea Bass, but we ate those the previous day! :lol:

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The other ingredients include a knob of galangal, the juice of 4 limes, 2 spring onions, lemongrass, a few chilies, a handful of both mint and coriander.

Apart from the fresh chilies, you will also need some dried chilies.

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Deep fry the dried chilies in hot oil until they turn a dark red, not burnt!

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Pound the deep fried chilies with a pestle and mortar.

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Freshly made powdered chilies have a roasted aroma. You can make them in advance and store them in an airtight container, but the roasted aroma dissipates over time. That´s why I like to make mine when it´s needed.

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You will also need some fish sauce, I use 55 grams, you can use a little less, then taste the finished dish and add some more if you want.

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40 grams of pounded dry roasted sticky rice. This is just raw sticky rice that has been fried in a dry pan until lightly browned then pounded with a pestle and mortar. Some people use a grinder or spice mill, but I find they over-grind the rice and make it too powdery, I like texture.

Chop the coriander, mint and spring onion.

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No need to get all “chefy” and chop them to finely!

Chop the white part of the lemongrass, chilies and galangal.

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10 grams of galagal should do the trick. Use as much chilies as you see fit, I have used 5.

Clean the fish and cut into fillets then remove the skin.

Cut the fillets in to small bite sized pieces.

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Dredge the skin in some corn flour then deep fry until crispy, set aside.

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Place the fish in a non-reactive bowl, and pour over the lime juice and give it a good stir.

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Make sure that all the fish is coated with the lime juice. Give it a stir for a good 2 or 3 minutes, then let it rest for a minute or two.

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With the aid of a slotted spoon or ladle, gently press out as much liquid from the fish pieces as possible.

Some people use their hands to squeeze out the liquid, but the idea is to be gentle, yet firm, and not break the pieces of fish.

Remove the fish from the liquid.

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It should have a glossy shine to it and still retain its shape.

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Pour the liquid in to a pan over a medium flame, as soon as it starts to bubble around the edges, add the fish sauce.

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Give it a good stir.

When it comes to a boil add the fish then lower the flame.

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Give it a good stir, making sure you coat the fish in the liquid.

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There is no need to cook the fish, you just want to glaze the pieces in the hot liquid. Remove the pan from the heat and place the contents in to a non-reactive bowl.

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You will see that the fish is not cooked, but has turned opaque.

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Add a large tablespoon of the chili powder.

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Then add the lemongrass, galangal and chilies.

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Add the roasted sticky rice powder.

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Give it a good stir, taste it and adjust the seasoning if required. The sticky rice powder will absorb the liquid.

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Finally add the chopped spring onion, mint and coriander.

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After another good stir, the dish is ready.

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Crumble the deep fried fish skin over the Goi Pa, plate it, serve it, enjoy it.

 

5 thoughts on “Goi Pa, Laotian Fish Salad

  1. Dear Vienne, I just been introduced to your FB recently, and am extremely impressed.

    Check out our website, we are also Lao and promoting Lao food. As my brother Mike call it – nutra-ceutical food, green and fresh, the best food ever.

    Your Goi Pla is exactly how I was taught many moons ago, i have been passing it on to our chefs and friends for years, its so great to see that it been done in the restaurant. I hope you do not mind that I will be sharing this with everyone from now on.. keep up the good work and keep it coming.

    Cheers, 
    Sue 

  2. Hi Sue, and welcome to Laocook.
    I have seen your site and it is very impressive. The philosophy that you guys have is great! The fact that you are sharing our foods on an international basis is outstanding!
    I am humbled and appreciate you sharing Laocook.
     
     

  3. Hi Vienne, what a great blog, great photos and very didactic. It is indeed introducing in a very neat way Lao cuisine to foreign palates. My family is from Pakse, we would eat the fish raw (cooked with lemon but we would not boil). Congrats!

  4. Hi Lili,

    I also enjoy the Goi with raw fish, we have also tried it with scalded fish (take a fillet of fish, place it skin side up on a board, cover with a clean cloth and pour some boiling water over it, let it stay covered for a short while then remove the cloth, this cooks the skin and leaves the rest of the flesh raw(ish)).

    I have never tried the recipe with lemon, I always use lime, but I will definately try it next time!

    Ciao!

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