In all our collective previous life that was without Covid-19, I used to travel quite a fair bit to Kota Kinabalu for work, and of course, food hunting was one of the only things to do after work.

After trying out quite a number of different restaurants at this land beneath the wind, I must say that my absolute favorite restaurant has got to be Tung Fong Seafood Restaurant at Inanam, located about 15 minutes away from KK city center.

garupa fillet, spring onion, cilipadi, garlic, ginger
garupa fillet, spring onion, cilipadi, garlic, ginger

Whenever at Tung Fong, we always end up ordering their signature steamed jewel garupa with spring onion and ginger dish. It’s a deceptively simple dish that uses simple few ingredients to enhance the natural taste of the fish filet.

Since we can’t be traveling at this time, I thought I’d try to recreate this dish when I got my hands on some red snapper fillet. The result was pretty satisfying, perhaps 80% similar to what the restaurant in KK offers. So here’s the recipe I’d like to document and share with everyone who’s interested.


  • 3-400 gram fish fillet (garupa or red snapper are best), sliced into bite sizes
  • a couple inches of ginger, julienne
  • 3-4 bulbs of garlic, chopped
  • 2 stalks of spring onion, cut into 2-3 inches length, split the white part
  • 3-4 cilipadi, chopped
  • 1 cap of shaoxing wine
  • 1 tablespoon soya sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon dark soya sauce
  • pepper to taste

best way to enjoy fish is by steaming

Cooking instructions:

  • put ginger & fish fillet in a steamer and steamed for 8 minutes in high heat
  • on a small frying pan, heat up some oil and put in garlic, spring onion, and cilipadi
  • add a few spoons of soup stock or water
  • when boiling, add 1 cap of shaoxing wine, soya sauce, dark soya sauce, and pepper
  • once fish is cooked, transfer to another serving plate
  • pour the sauce with onion/garlic onto the fish
  • serve while hot!

A slightly different way of preparing steamed fish, adds to the sweetness of the fish. Not quite as good as the restaurant but it was still very satisfying indeed.

Happy cooking!

KY cooks – Steamed Garupa Fish, Sabah Tung Fong Restaurant style

8 thoughts on “KY cooks – Steamed Garupa Fish, Sabah Tung Fong Restaurant style

  • August 9, 2021 at 6:30 am

    Bet that awesome sauce would bring the taste of the fish to a whole new level. Sure looks good!

    • August 9, 2021 at 4:34 pm

      suituapui: oh yesss, looks good and tastes the part too 😀

  • August 9, 2021 at 11:26 am

    Steamed fish with flavourful sauce, nothing better this this!

  • August 10, 2021 at 5:37 pm

    Yes, that’s quite a different take on steamed fish. Usually, we don’t cook the sauce separately and pour it over the fish but it’s a new method I can certainly try. Steamed fish for me anytime! 😉

    • August 10, 2021 at 7:55 pm

      eatwhateatwhere: yea, give it a try!

  • August 11, 2021 at 6:09 pm

    That looks nice and fresh. You can’t go wrong with spring onion and ginger.

    • August 12, 2021 at 8:41 am

      Monica: that’s very true!


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