When I was a kid, commercially prepared daing na bangus was expensive and people only get to enjoy them home-cooked. Luckily for me, my mom supplies premium daing na bangus to Rustan's and Toyota Coop Supermarkets. Every week I get to watch my mom and cousins make lots of daing na bangus by carefully washing the fish, deboning them using equipment that look like forceps, then soaking them in a high-quality marinade that is very rich in ingredients. The Rustan's manager at the time says that my mom's marinated butterfly milkfish were so good that they are gone off the shelves within three or four days.
That was a long time ago, when my mom was a home-based entrepreneur. But things change, and although Rustan's provide us with a good amount of income, my mom was given a job that earned her five times her income from supplying daing na bangus to supermarkets. And all that without the mess of handling kilos of fish every week. Being very busy, no more daing na bangus graced our dining tables for a very long time until she moved to Quebec to work. I asked her for the recipe, and it was surprisingly very simple. When cooked, it is best served with a side dish of green mango salad.
Daing na Bangus Recipe
2 large milkfish (preferably from Pangasinan)
1 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup crushed and coarsely chopped gralic
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- Have your selected milkfish cleaned out and butterfly-cut in the market.
- Wash the fish thoroughly with running water.
- Mix all other ingredients in a large bowl.
- Completely submerge the milkfish in the mixture.
- Let fish marinate in the fridge for at least 12 hours for maximum absorption of flavors.
- Shallow fry in a hot pan, turning when one side is sufficiently browned.
- Serve with green mango salad and garlic fried rice.