Fish Balls 鱼丸


Chinese Name: 鱼丸

English Name: Fish Balls

Category: Fujian cuisine闽菜; Cantonese cuisine粤菜

Main Ingredients: Fish

Fish Balls 鱼丸
Fish Balls

Fish balls鱼丸, also known as “fish wrapped meat鱼包肉”, is one of the snacks with coastal characteristics. Fish ball is a traditional and characteristic famous spot often cooked in Fuzhou福州, Wenzhou温州, South Fujian闽南, Guangdong广东, Taiwan台湾 and Fuzhou抚州, Jiangxi, belonging to the Cantonese粤菜 or Fujian cuisine闽菜. Also known as “water pill水丸”, it was called “fish ball for a short time氽鱼丸” in ancient times. Because it tastes delicious and is not greasy when eaten, it can be used as a snack ingredient and soup. It is an indispensable seafood delicacy for coastal people.

Fish Balls 鱼丸
Fish ball soup

According to records, Qin Shihuang秦始皇 tasted fish. After he unified the country and became the emperor, every meal must have fish, but there must be no fish bones. If there were fish bones, the chef would be killed. Several chefs died. One day, a cook made imperial food. When he saw the fish being timid and angry, he threw his kitchen knife at the fish to vent his anger. He was surprised to find that the bones of the fish bones were exposed automatically, and the fish meat became fish paste.

At this time, the palace passed the meal. The chef was quick to get wise, picked out the fish bones, and kneaded the fish fillets into balls. Without thinking, he put them into the boiling soup and made them into balls for a short time. After a while, the fish balls were white, soft, and crystal. The fresh fish balls floated on the soup and were presented to the emperor. After tasting it, Qin Shihuang praised it very much and ordered a reward. Later, this practice gradually spread from the palace to the people, known as “fish balls for a short time氽鱼丸”, that is, fish balls.

Fish Balls 鱼丸
Curry fish balls

Fuzhou is close to the sea and rich in aquatic products, so fish balls have gradually become a classic of Fuzhou fish snacks in the past thousand years and are widely praised.

Fuzhou has the saying that “no fish balls, no table没有鱼丸不成席”. It is a custom in Fuzhou that when holding a banquet, all guests should “hold a wine bag夹酒包”. In the past, there were fish balls in the “wine bags酒包”, which were as big as children’s fists. When they came home, they had to be cut into small pieces for everyone to eat. Some people also like to eat small fish balls without filling them. They are specially made and have strong elasticity.

Fish Balls 鱼丸
Fish balls in instant noodles

There are many kinds of fish balls in Taiwan, among which the crispy one is also called “crisp ball脆丸”. Taiwan lice fish balls台湾虱目鱼丸, freshwater shark balls淡水鲨鱼丸 (usually called Fuzhou fish balls福州鱼丸), Nanfang Aogui head swordfish balls南方澳鬼头刀鱼丸, and Kaohsiung flag fish balls高雄旗鱼丸 are the four representative fish balls in Taiwan. The history of fish balls in Taiwan is very long. After a long period of improvement and development, Taiwan fish balls have formed their own characteristics, with delicious, nutritious, and healthy food characteristics.

Fish Balls 鱼丸
White fish balls

The most famous snack on Gulangyu Island in Xiamen is Gulangyu鼓浪屿 Fish Ball, which originates from Fuzhou fish ball-making technology. The fish balls of Gulangyu Island in Xiamen are one of the snacks in Xiamen. Many fish balls are made by machines. The process of truly handmade fish balls is very strict. There are strict requirements for every detail from material selection, to meat scraping, chopping, stirring, and pill squeezing. For example, when scraping fish, the knife method is very particular. It is required to scrape along the fiber lines. The inclination of the knife should be 45 degrees. Scrape the fish into thin slices.

It is said that the traditional food of Luoding City罗定市, “Crease Fish Rot皱纱鱼腐”, originated in the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty. Since its origin, the famous dish “Crease Fish Rot” has been one of the necessary dishes for local banquet guests. Of course, good food materials need to keep pace with the times. Therefore, “Luoding Crease Fish Decay罗定皱纱鱼腐” is listed in the list of intangible cultural heritage protection in Luoding City, Guangdong Province for protection.

How to make Fish Balls?


  • 500 grams of fish
  • 40 grams of clean water
  • 3 egg whites
  • 50 g wet starch
  • 4g refined salt
  • 25g onion and ginger juice
  • 1.5g MSG
  • Cooked lard 50g
Fish Balls 鱼丸
Seaweed, Tofu and Fish Ball Soup


  • Step 1, Take 500g of fish meat, chop it into a fish paste, add 40g of water, 4g of refined salt, 25g of onion, and ginger juice, and mix well in one direction.
  • Step 2, When it is sticky, try to squeeze a fish ball by hand and put it into cold water. If it can float, then add 3 egg whites, 50g wet starch, 1.5g monosodium glutamate, and 50g cooked lard that have been stirred into a foam shape. Stir them in one direction to form fish balls.
  • Step 3, Then, squeeze the material into fish balls with a diameter of 3cm by hand and put them into a cold water pot. Boil them over high heat (keep the fire low for 3 minutes), skim the foam, and then remove the fish balls with a colander.
Fish Balls 鱼丸
Orderly placed fish balls

Video Guide

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