One of my home province An Giang’s most desirable dishes is ca lang which roughly translates as fish wheel which neither makes sense nor does it give this rare delight justice.
To prepare firstly I go to a reputable market in the south and purchase one and a half kilos of ca lang and it is not cheap either – but you get what you pay for I find.
I have tried desperately to find this fleshy fish in Saigon markets but it is tough as most fishermen sell straight to restaurants in An Giang or in the big cities in the south for huge profits I can imagine as it is much desired.
However, when I am back in my home town of Long Xuyen I can get my hands on it without too much trouble.
So, once I have procured my favorite fish, I gut it of course. I then add green and red chili, minced garlic, chopped onion and seasoning and mix together in a small bowl and mix it thoroughly with the fish and then cook in an oven or barbecue for 15 minutes.
It should come out slightly golden brown and you then add rau ram (shaded vegetable) for a garnish
effect. I also use the Saigonese favorite dip of lemon pepper and salt which provides a great combination with ca lang.
When I prepare this for my family I normally serve with boiled rice and vegetables hoa thein ly and bong bi.
My family’s smiles say it all when I prepare the An Giang specialty ca lang.