Toman fish is also called the giant snakehead or giant mudfish which is capable of growing to over 1 meter in length (3.3 feet) and a weight of over 20 kilograms (44 pounds). It is widely distributed in the freshwater of South East Asia.

In Singapore, this fish is less costly as compared to others like snapper or grouper. It is widely used to make into fish porridge or fish soup to go with rice or vermicelli.

I am always curious how it will taste like if I make it into a steak. This fish taste rather plain on its own so I made a rich sauce to go with it.



Toman fillet

Sea salt

Black pepper


Olive oil









Olive oil


Cooking cream

Chopped fresh basil

Lemon juice

Lemon zest

White wine

Sea salt

Black pepper


Shred carrots into long thin stripes and steam with some fresh rosemary.

Heat up olive oil in a pan over medium high heat. Marinate fillet with salt and pepper then coat with dry flour and fry for 3 minutes on each side. Put fillet aside.

Reduce to low heat and use the remaining oil to fry shallots with butter until shallots turn translucent. Add salt and pepper follow by a gulp of white wine to deglaze the pan. Add a teaspoon of lemon juice and zest follow by cooking cream. Add chopped basil and bring to the boil then turn off heat.

Carrots should be done by now. Remove rosemary, add butter and mix well.

Spoon lemon cream sauce over fillet, carrot and serve immediately.



    1. Thank you for the nice comment Marisa. I’m so happy you like it. This sauce should go well with chicken and other seafood too. I should try with grilled prawns and scallops as well.

    1. Thank you for the compliment. Rosemary steam with carrots was a good surprise as well. I didn’t expect the herb to induce so much flavor into the carrot.

  1. Fillet with lemon cream sauce.., yum!! I have never eaten this. It looks and sounds delicious. I love how you prepared the carrots.

    Danny, you should place a follow button from your widgets so we can click it and your new posts come to our emails. That way we never miss a good meal or anything else that you post on your wonderful blog 🙂

    1. Hi Judy, Thank you for your nice comment. I’m so happy you love the carrots. I never knew rosemary can give such strong flavor to the carrots by steaming it. The effect is greater than frying or baking.

      And a big thank you for the tip on the follow button. I am not aware of that function. Will search for it now. 🙂

  2. That sounds delicious! Being from Florida, but currently residing for a few months in landlocked Colorado, my husband and I are in need of ways to make fish! We usually just get fresh, which needs little, but now in Colorado, we can only get frozen. I think I’ll try the sauce and side to spice up my slightly boring frozen white fish that we usually make!

    1. Thank you for your nice comment. Its the same here in Singapore. Fresh fish is very limited. Let me know if you try the sauce. I hope you will like it. The simple side adds good sweetness to the main as well. 🙂

        1. So happy to know! I am not sure if you can get this fish – Sea bass in Boston. Would like to share this simple but delicious oriental recipe from my mum who is a great cook.

          Get a really fresh Sea bass. Season with salt and white pepper. Steam it with light soy sauce and spring onions. In a pan, fry a good amount of chopped garlic. Once the fish is done, pour sizzling hot garlic together with the oil over the fish and serve immediately 🙂

          Looking forward to hear from you again.

  3. Gosh, I absolutely love the sound of that sauce. I’m not sure that I can get hold of Toman here – I loved hearing about a new fish I’d never known of. But I bet that sauce would go with other types. It would certainly be a crime not to try it out. I’m taking my holidays as of tomorrow and I plan to do lots of the things I love, including cooking. So there will be a day to give these new flavours a go. I hope you have a lovely time over Christmas and the New Year. Looking forward to ‘seeing you’ in 2013 xxx

    1. Thank you for your nice comment Gabriela. Good to know you are taking your holidays. We are living in a world with too little time to do what we love and too little opportunities to follow where our heart wants to take us. I hope you will have a great holiday to complete the year with loads of joyful moments.

      Red Snapper is a good alternative to Toman. It is much sweeter which should go even better with the lemon cream sauce.

      Seeya in 2013! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

    1. Hi Gabriela, you are most welcomed. I saw your new post title in the reader and will be saving it aside to enjoy your writing tonight with a glass of my favorite wine.

      1. Ok, so I made it with salmon (because our fish choices were REALLY limited). But the sauce and the fish turned out perfectly (I had to finish the fish in the over for just a few min since it was a thick piece).

        The carrots, I shredded and used a garlic-herb flavored olive oil along with some other seasonings and it was delicious!

        I like to take other people’s recipes and tweak them to fit my needs, and this really was a perfect one to do just that! I’ve never made carrots like that before so now we have another side dish to turn to!

        1. That’s a happy moment!

          Thank you for sharing Rebecca. I really appreciate it.

          Recipes are meant to be tweak to suit each preference. I am so glad you’ve found yours in this dish.

          Merry Christmas!

    1. Thank you for your nice comment. Toman actually taste pretty bland as compare to snapper or sea bass. But it is an inexpensive fish that provides a lot of meat. That’s why it is popular over here in its own way.

      1. Oops sorry to sprinkle sawdust on your recipe, Dan. The fish did fascinate and scare me at the same time. But here in my country, we also have the catfish which looks terrifying but is delicious when cooked. But you guys have bigger monsters. LOL:-D

        1. Not at all Jojie. This is such a fun link that you’ve added for me 🙂 It’s scary in a good way because this fish provides a lot of meat at an inexpensive price. Lol!!!

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