We’re back! 75% done with the first year of residency. But even more importantly…

2 days away from our first wedding anniversary!

And of course it’s a new year on the Lunar calendar. While this may seem like a bit of a side note, Lunar New Year has meaning for Sarah and I in addition to all the values, tradition, and culture that I grew up with. Because I proposed to Sarah on Lunar New Year.


a quick snap for our parents on that day

For those unfamiliar with the story, Sarah was on her surgery rotation at that point in time in medical school. I had come home and began preparing a fairly traditional new year’s dinner consisting of dumplings, noodles, and fish (each dish with its own symbolism). In true surgery fashion, she ended up being delayed in the operating room that day. When she did arrive home, we had dinner together. Afterwards, there still remained the tradition of red envelopes. I had purposely made a show early on that evening about stuffing a few red envelopes with chocolate. While Sarah took a shower, I had wrapped up her wedding ring in chocolate foil and shaped it into the form of the other chocolates and stuffed it in a red envelope. So when Sarah opened her red envelope that evening, she discovered the ring. In a day already full of symbolism, why not add one more symbol to the list and start the year off right. We announced our engagement to our friends a few weeks later at a belated Lunar New Year gathering.

Being away from home on New Year’s is always tough for a day that is supposed to be spent with family. We’ve made the most of it the past few years by having our friends over to celebrate as in many ways, they’ve become members of our new family. This year in DC was no different (although we greatly missed our NOLA family). A few weeks ago, we hosted a bunch of my co-interns and friends at our annual Lunar New Year party. I’ve posted a lot of the recipes that I use already including peanut noodles and dumplings. But I have been holding out on my steamed fish recipe.

Steamed Fish with Ginger and Green Onions



  • Fish                                          1 whole, cleaned
  • Green onions                        6
  • Ginger                                     6 large slices
  • Cooking wine                        3 T
  • Salt
  • Soy sauce                                1/2 T
  • Black vinegar                        1/2 T
  • Sesame oil                              1 t
  • Sugar                                        1/2 t

We’ve been pretty spoiled living in New Orleans and having access to some really tasty and cheap fresh fish. For best flavor, try to get whatever local fresh caught white fish is available to you. I used rockfish for my most recent iteration.

To prep your fish, trim off the fins/spines, get rid of the insides, and descale (all this can be done at the store for you if you ask). Slice 3 evenly spaced slits on each side of the fish. Rub cooking wine onto the entire fish including the inside cavity and the slits. Lightly sprinkle some salt on the fish. Place your slices of ginger into the slits on each side. Smash 3 of the green onion stalks with the flat side of your knife. Place it on the bottom of a dish to line it. Place your fish on top of the green onions and place entire dish into a steamer. Depending on the size of your fish, it should steam for about 10-15 minutes.

As the fish is steaming, make a simple sauce to drizzle over. Combine soy sauce, black vinegar, sesame oil, and sugar. Mix well in small bowl. Also slice remaining 3 stalks of green onion longitudinally into thin strips. If you want them to curl for added prettiness, place the strips into a bowl with water and ice.

When the fish is done, carefully remove in from the dish and place it onto a clean plate. If you put our green onions in ice water, make sure to dry them off on some paper towels. Sprinkle your green onions generously over the fish. Pour over the sauce. Serve.





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