Monday, August 24, 2009

A Fish Called Unforgettable

Yes, move over, Wanda, because here's Unforgettable ("wang bu liao" in Chinese). It may be ugly outside but inside it's ambrosia, I'm told.

A friend showed me these photos she took of a very special steamed fish she ate in Kuala Lumpur (I realise that I shouldn't use abbreviations like most Asians do. I just got mail from a reader in France asking what 'KK' means. KK stands for Kota Kinabalu, the capital of Sabah, my hometown.).

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The scales of Unforgettable, which are as big as a serving spoon, are edible too. The best part of the fish, as most fish gourmets would know, is the upper body with the area around the stomach being most highly prized. Fish heads too are considered a great delicacy, for the flavorful gelatinous cartilage.

This fish is called "wang bu liao" in Chinese which means unforgettable. I have never heard of this fish before and I want to know if any of you know about this riparian specie which was caught in a river in Sibu, Sarawak. It is very rare, jumps up to grab fruits that overhang the rivers, and according to my friend, it is the best-tasting fish she has ever, ever eaten in her life. It beats black cod and all those special fish my friend has ever eaten. It was silky, tender and splendid beyond words, according my friend. It better be, because this dish cost RM6000/US$1600! No, I didn't get the zeros wrong. I worked out that if they got 20 spoonsful of meat from the dish, which was over 2 kg, each spoonful works out to RM300/US$80. (Choke! Gasp!) Unless there is a more expensive fish in the world, I declare this the most expensive fish I have ever heard of. Now this is one fish I want to eat before I die.

27 comments:

ganache-ganache said...

What ? Rm6000 for this fish & it looked ugly ! But I wonder what makes this fish so expensive ??

zurin said...

I'm lost for words! was it that good?but of course thats relative... To your monthly budget.

Big boys Oven said...

OMG! this fish is truly unforgettable as I will remeber cause i don't have the budget to indulge it ! :(

Kim said...

I've never heard of this ugly thing. And so expensive too. Wow.

eXodus said...

I've heard about this fish. in chinese its called unforgettable but in Sarawak its called empurau. the price in west malaysia can cost up to RM9,000 per kilo but in Sarawak it will cost around RM 3,000=)

I wanted to try but..no money hahaha

Fooman said...

Looks like its related to the Catfish

Denise ^ ChickyEGG said...

some extinction species tat charged so high!

SL said...

sounds like empurau..
its a very fatty fish, that why its best cooked steamed..
since its so fatty, eating too much of it make u a bit "jelak"

TripleJin said...

w-o-w..

Luckily the scales are edible. I'd be wolfing down the scales for that price!

CK Ng said...

The empurau fish has been too over-priced! Too bad that when my relatives from Sibu always brought them over during my childhood time, I did not know how to appreciate gourmet fish at that time.

terri@adailyobsession said...

ganache: maybe bc it is rare or even getting extinct?

zurin: i think if black cod was very rare n sold for thousands of $, it'll be considered the best fish too. but since i've never eaten unforgettable, i can't say..

bbo: yes, i think only the rich & the politicians can afford it lol

kim: it is ugly isn't it. has whiskers too!

terri@adailyobsession said...

exodus:thnx for telling me! i googled n found tt there are lots of info on the empurau. looks like i'm one of the few who never heard of it

fooman:tt's what i saw too, the whiskers:D

denise: i think so. i'd feel guilty eating it.

sl: my son said fatty fish is best :D

triple jin: yes, me too, n all the bones and sauce...

ck: what, u grew up eating empurau?? so lucky! hey, if i come to kuching, can arrange for a small empurau on nee's table??

Shan said...

"Move over Wanda"

LOL Classic Terri! :D

terri@adailyobsession said...

shan: yes, i know. lame aren't i :DD

Precious Pea said...

WHATTTTT????? Let me start earning AUD then maybe i can afford 2 spoonful of it when I come back for holiday.

ShenV said...

Overpriced here, it's actually only RM600-700 per kg, best weight they say is 4 kg.

Dale McOinkies said...

When they make scratch-and-lick monitors, let me know

Darren Jee said...

Hi Terry, this fish is called empurau. Once the fish reach West Msia dinner table, the price has been markup 1500%-2000%. I remember I got 2 fish last year when I was in Bintulu for 450/kg. I would have to disagree that they are sold for RM6000/kg in West Msia though.....this is unbelievable. I would be a unforgetable millionaire if I bring 200kg of the fish to sell there....hahaha.

terri@adailyobsession said...

pp: u'd pay AUD200 for 2 spoonsful of unforgettable?

shenv: yes, i was told the bigger the fish the better

dale: u think teleporting will be a reality? i'm beginning to doubt if man did walk on the moon!

darren jee: smone directed me to here http://dannyong.com/?p=433 and it seems the price my friend stated is correct.

Michelle said...

Hey aunty terri,

I'm hongyi's friend. If you really want to eat this fish, it's at best if you go to Kapit, Sarawak. Cheaper there. Even better if you wait at the jetty there and wait for the fisherman return cz can get a much better deal from them. And thanks for telling me how expensive that is because my cousins and I used to wasted a lot of it because we felt sick after eating too many fish. Will appreciate it next time when I return home to Sibu :)

Term papers said...

It is the best-tasting fish I am ever, ever eaten in My life. It beats black cod and all those special fish It was silky, tender and splendid beyond words, according To me.

Anonymous said...

All of you shit, guys taste it! nothing compare to Tilapia, better try tilapia then consider this shit.

Stone bay Restaurant in Penang!

indianapolis hotels downtown said...

Really Cool. I never know there is such a wonderful place that ,I can find what I need. Thanks very much for sharing all this great information here.

Anonymous said...

TRUE bro...I never eat jek....but my father eat before ma...eat till boring....Empurau la...Sultan Fish la...Sultan Fish ..my father eat a lot ...during his childhood ..pancing at Sungai ..hahahha at Pahang, Benta. Yes this kind of fish ..is WILD and not able to find in any place...just few certain places only. This type of fish extremely hard to catch them..heheheheh that's why so expensive and limited. Now A lot ppl catch and put a farm ...so will born more and more. But 100% quality as the WILD lol..

Anonymous said...

of course not 100% as qualify as original WILD wan lol..cause from farm ma..if directly from river. wow...sure nice.

Anonymous said...

Its not that expensive i can sell u rm600 per kg lah or rm800 per kg live. email elpololoco76@yahoo.com if interested

Anonymous said...

This fish is not ugly...in fact it is very beautiful. It looks like a breed of dark/golden carps or kois and they swim very beautifully. It is only ugly because the people who catch the fish handled it badly. I'm saying this from experience, as my parents rears empurau for over 5 years already and i've held and caught an amount of them myself. they are beautiful and calm creatures.

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