Kitang is a fish. What its scientific name is or by whatever other name it goes by is something I have yet to discover. It was the favorite fish of my late uncle Ben who would have grilled kitang almost every day after he was obliged to go on a low-fat, low-salt and low-sugar diet. Kitang is not always available in the market and the times that it is, the price doesn’t make it very attractive. When I found kitang today at Shopwise for P198.00 per kilo, I choose the largest one and cooked it for lunch along with the chicken and misua soup.
This dish is a modified sarciado. Sarciado literally means “with sauce” but in Filipino cooking, it generally refers to any dish with a sauce made with chopped onions and tomatoes. With fish sarciado, it isn’t uncommon to add beaten eggs to the sauce. I went a step farther and added chopped firm tofu and onion leaves.
Serves 2 to 4.
Ingredients for pan-fried kitang with tofu-egg topping
1 large kitang (or your fish of choice), about a kilo
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely minced
1 large onion or 2 shallots, peeled and finely chopped
2 plump and juicy tomatoes, chopped
patis (fish sauce)
1/2 c. of chopped firm tofu
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsps. of finely sliced onion leaves
2 tbsps. of cooking oil
Score the fish on both sides.
Heat the cooking oil in a non-stick pan. Pour in the beaten egg and cook until set. Scoop out the egg, transfer to a chopping board and coarsely chop. Set aside.
Reheat the cooking oil and lightly fry the fish to sear both sides.
Push the fish to one side of the frying pan. Saute the chopped onion in the hot oil. When it starts to turn soft, add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and cook for another 30 seconds. Stir in the chopped tofu.
Push the fish to the center of the frying pan, moving the vegetables around it. Pour in half a cup of water. Season with 2 to 3 tablespoonfuls of patis. Sprinkle liberally with ground pepper. Cover and cook over low heat for about 15 minutes.
With a large slotted spatula, lift the fish and transfer to a serving platter.
Add the chopped egg to the vegetables and tofu. Cook until the egg is reheated. Season the salsa with more patis and pepper if necessary.
Pour the salsa over the fish. Sprinkle with the chopped onion leaves and serve with hot rice.