Impress your guest with this intricate dish, filled with tender fish meat smothered in spice!
Let's start cooking!
Step 1 - Blend and fry spice paste
Preheat the oven to 220°C on fan mode.
In a blender, blend 2 stalks lemongrass, ginger, galangal, turmeric powder, shallots, 5 bay leaves, 5 kaffir lime leaves, garlic, large red chilies, chili padi, ground coriander, candlenuts and ½ cup water until smooth.
In a pan on medium heat, heat up 4 Tbsp vegetable oil and fry spice paste for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and oil separates from paste.
Once oil separates from spice paste, add in gula melaka, 1 tsp salt and mix well for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Step 2 - Prepare banana leaves
Place 2 banana leaves in the oven for around 30 seconds to 1 minute, just to soften them and evaporate some of the moisture within. They should shrivel up slightly around the edges.
Remove from oven and place banana leaves on baking tray overlapping each other.
Step 3 - Marinate and stuff fish
Using a sharp knife, cut 4 slashes on each side of the fish. Cut about halfway into the flesh.
Place fish on the banana leaves and spread spice paste evenly all over the fish on both sides, making sure to get it into the cuts as well as side the fish.
Stuff the inside of fish with 5 bay leaves, 5 kaffir lime leaves and 3 bruised lemongrass stalks.
Step 4 -Wrap and bake fish
Place the fish in the centre of the banana leaves. Fold the edge closest to you over the fish, followed by the opposite end.
Secure the package with toothpicks or skewers.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the oven, until cooked through.
Plate and serve!
Place wrapped fish on serving plate and unwrap the banana leaves. Serve hot with lime or lemon wedges on the side.