The spotted scat (Scatophagus argus, Vietnamese: cá nâu) is a species of fish in the scat family Scatophagidae. In Vietnam, this scat fish is distributed in all sea waters from North to South, from offshore to coastal estuaries. The fish lives in rock crevices, coral reefs, sluice gates, in brackish regions where there are many seaweeds which it feeds on.
The scat fish can be used in so many ways: deep-fried, braised (slow-cooked), roasted in leaves… Braising is probably the most common cooking practice. Some common ingredients to be paired with the scat: fermented rice, daikon radish, star fruits, and bush grapes…
Bush grapes are the berries of a wild grape vine known as Cayratia trifolia (Vietnamese: giác, vác). In Vietnam, ripe bush grapes can be used to brew bush grape wine, while green ones can be cooked as a source for acidity, commonly found in fish sour soup.
This dish, braised spotted scat fish with bush grapes (Cá nâu kho trái giác), is part of southwestern Vietnamese cuisine.
If you don't have braise water or paste, just caramelize some sugar.
The same cooking way with tamarind, and fermented rice.