Shark's Fin Preparation

(Photo by suanie/Flickr)


500 g/1 lb refined shark's fin
3 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon finely sliced fresh ginger
8 spring onions (scallions), cut in short lengths
2 tablespoons rice wine
500 ml/1 pint/2 cups chicken or duck stock


Soak the dried fin in a large pot of cold water for 1 day, changing the water 4 times. Scrub with a brush. Add to a wok filled with cold water and slowly bring to the boil. Remove and plunge into cold water. When cool, rinse and place in a heatproof dish that will fit a steamer. Heat oil and stir-fry the ginger and spring onions, adding wine and stock. Bring to the boil. Pour stock onto the fin and steam for 3 hours. Remove fin (discarding stock) and wash in hot water, changing the water 3 times. The shark's fin is now ready to use.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)