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Chilean Black Sea Bass with Mustard Crust and Ginger Soy Mirin Sauce (July 25, 2001)

Toronto Taste! Oh, what could be nicer. Wonderful food created by Toronto's top chefs, all to benefit Second Harvest, the not-for–profit perishable food rescue program. Now in its 11th year, the event has raised more than two million dollars to help feed thousands of hungry and homeless people in the city.

The Chef’s Table is a cookbook featuring some of the best dishes served at Toronto Taste through the years, and each recipe includes wine suggestions from Tony Aspler plus delightful comments and engaging profiles of the chefs and their restaurants from author and food writer James Chatto. Enjoy!

Chilean Black Sea Bass with Mustard Crust and Ginger Soy Mirin Sauce

From Chef Massimo Capra at his hugely popular restaurant, Mistura. This dish may have a few extra steps, but the end result is worth the work. The ginger soy sauce adds a piquant counterpoint to the garlic, lemongrass and apple flavours.

It’s a wonderful combination that truly gilds this fine fish.

Serves 4

4× 6 oz. (180 g) Chilean black sea bass fillets
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 Tbs. vegetable oil (15 mL)
¼ cup grainy Dijon mustard (60 mL)
2 Tbs. chopped pickled ginger (30 mL)
1 Tbs. roasted garlic puree (15 mL) - see recipe at bottom of page

Ginger Soy Mirin Sauce

1 Tbs. vegetable oil (15 mL)
1 onion, thinly sliced
¼ cup grated ginger (60 mL)
10 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes,
     stemmed and thinly sliced
3 sweet apples, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, sliced
3 stalks lemongrass, finely chopped
1 carrot, chopped
¼ cup mirin (Japanese rice wine) (60 mL)
¼ cup light soy sauce (60 mL)
1 cup vegetable or chicken stock (240 mL)
Black and white toasted sesame seeds

Preheat oven to 450°F (235°C). Rinse fish and pat dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Heat 1 Tbs. oil (15mL) in large skillet on high heat. Cook fish for 2 minutes per side.

Roasted Garlic Puree
To roast garlic, cut ½ inch from top of garlic head to expose cloves. Remove any excess papery skin from head, but do not peel. Sprinkle garlic with 1 tsp. (5 mL) olive oil and wrap in foil. Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 40 to 45 minutes or until very soft. Cool. Squeeze garlic out of cloves from base and discard skins.
Makes about 2 Tbs. puree (30 mL).

Puree mustard, pickled ginger and roasted garlic in food processor. Spread over top of fish and place fish on baking sheet.

Heat 1 Tsp. (15mL) oil in saucepan on medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add grated ginger, mushrooms, apples, sliced garlic, lemongrass and carrot and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring until soft.

Add mirin and reduce by half, about 1 minute. Stir in soy sauce and stock. Bring to boil and reduce by half, about 5 minutes.

Drain apple mixture in strainer, pressing down with spoon to press out all liquid. Return liquid to saucepan and reheat when needed.

Accompanying wine?
Tony Recommends...

This recipe calls for a fruity white wine with a little residual sweetness. Tony suggests a Canadian off-dry Riesling, or a German Riesling Kabinett or Alsace Tokay-Pinot Gris. Members can find a range of options for White Fruity Medium Bodied wines in the wine database.

Bake fish for 10 to 12 minutes or until just cooked. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve with sauce.

OK, what's for dessert?

The Chef’s Table, by Lucy Waverman, James Chatto and Tony Aspler was published by Random House Canada.

Photograph courtesy Vince Noguchi.

Happily tested by Helen Hatton and Ron Morris.




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