Homemade Sesame Mock Shrimp Toast Dim Sum Recipe -- Hatosi -- Gluten Free, Egg Free, Fish Based, Frugal

I run a local frugal cooking Facebook group, and one of my friends, Alison, often shares some great frugal recipes in it. The other day she shared a recipe for sesame chicken toast that she said was really cheap, and just like the appetizers in the Chinese restaurants, and that it used up an old roll of bread. I honestly had no idea what she was talking about- never heard of sesame chicken toast, and looking at the picture I couldn't make heads or tails of what the dish actually was. 

Turns out that this is a fish free version of another dish I never heard of- shrimp or prawn toast. This dim dum dish is of Cantonese origin, known as hatosi (shrimp toast in Cantonese) but has spread to be part of Japanese, Vietnamese, and Thai cuisine as well. A variant in some western countries has sesame seeds sprinkled on top.

To make this dish, you grind up shrimp into a paste with seasonings, spread it on bread thinly, dip it in sesame seeds and then either fry or bake. Since I don't eat shellfish, I decided to make a version that I could eat. The internet has many chicken based variations of this dish, but I decided to make it with fish, something I didn't find anywhere when searching the internet. I would guess that this dish could be called yu-tosi based on what I looked up on how to say fish in Cantonese, but I could be wrong.

As with most dim sum, hatosi are generally eaten with a dipping sauce. I've tried soy sauce and sweet chili sauce with my mock shrimp toast, but definitely want to try this with spicy mayonnaise, nuoc cham (Vietnamese fish sauce based dipping sauce) or hoisin sauce. 

What is really cool about this recipe is that it uses up leftover bread, even stale bread. I made some gluten free bread that didn't come out spectacularly once it was no longer fresh from the oven, but it was amazing repurposed here. While I used gluten free bread for mine, of course you can use gluten bread as well, store bought or homemade, just then it won't be gluten free.

Also, in addition to revamping leftovers, this, while using fish, is quite frugal because the amount of fish used is quite minimal. I used 2 fillets of St Peter's fish, approximately 200 grams, and it was enough for many many pieces of dim sum, enough to have them as the base of a meal for 3 people. You spread the fish layer very thin and it goes very far.

The hardest work for this dish literally is washing the food processor after. Yea, that's how easy it is. Oh, or maybe cutting the bread. 

Homemade Sesame Mock Shrimp Toast Dim Sum Recipe -- Hatosi -- Fish Based, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Frugal


2 fillets skinless white fish, approximately 200 grams
2 teaspoons gluten free soy sauce
1 teaspoon fresh ginger
1 clove garlic 
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon potato starch or corn starch
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons ground flax seed
1 scallion
A few slices of gluten free bread or a few gluten free rolls, or equivalent amount of glutinous bread
Toasted sesame oil
Sesame seeds
Oil for frying

1. Put your fish, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, sugar, scallions, flax seeds, and water in a food processor until smooth. No, this doesn't work in a blender, it isn't liquidy enough. Food processor only.

2. Cut your bread into smallish pieces. If you have a round, roll cut lengthwise, then cut in half. If a baguette, cut in slices. If you have bread slices, cut in halves or fourths. There's no official size it needs to be, but basically cut it small enough that its finger food. No bigger than a few inches square.

3. Lightly brush toasted sesame oil on both sides of your bread. (Or you can dip it in your oil if you don't mind it being saturated.

4. Lightly spread your fish paste onto one side of your bread. Think of it like you'd spread peanut butter or cream cheese- a few milimeters thick only.

5. Dip your bread, fish side down, into sesame seeds, so you have a nice coat over the fish paste.

6. Heat up oil and fry, fish paste side down on a medium high flame. Turn over once browned. I found that as I lay out all the pieces in the pan, as soon as I finished laying the last piece down I needed to flip the first one over. And once I flipped all them over, I had to take the first ones out.

7. Serve hot or even room temperature with your favorite Asian dipping sauce.


Want some more Asian appetizers? Check out these recipes. 

What is your favorite dim sum? What is your favorite dim sum dipping sauce?
Have you ever had shrimp toast, either with sesame or without? Chicken toast? Does this look like a recipe you'd try?

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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