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Zing your fish

Zing your fish

Posted on 01. May, 2010 by gilly in TASTE

With time, I’ve grown increasingly impatient (that’s code for intolerant) with fussy recipes that require more attention and acrobatics than a plastic surgery procedure. I’ve also calmed down on cookbook purchases, only occasionally consulting my Jamie Oliver collection for inspiration, though his website is equally satisfying.

I cook a lot. Generally with the phone on my ear but sometimes with my mind (mindfully, even, as in the Kabat-Zinn way), but mostly with my heart and hunch. I tend to know by now, pretty intuitively, what ingredients work well together and which ones will insult each other. And measuring out exact amounts is not for me anymore. I’m into throwing together big time, particularly when it comes to marinades. Here’s one that’s a winner with my kids and their friends (it’s their enthusiasm this evening that had me write this up!).

  • 2 generous glugs soya sauce
  • 2 generous tablespoons honey
  • 1 average glug mirin rice vinegar (alternative: juice of 1 lemon)
  • 2 crushed or finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 2 tiny, man-killing Thai chilies—green or red—finely chopped (and hands thoroughly washed, right after you chop, lest you unwittingly graze a nose, eyes and possibly other anatomical parts. Ignore this warning at your peril). Alternatives to fresh chili: 2 generous squirts of wasabi, tubes of which can be kept in the fridge forever like toothpaste (just as handy), or a teaspoon of harissa paste.
  • 1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, grated or finely chopped, no real need to peel
  • 1 bunch fresh coriander, coarsely chopped
  • 4-6 stems scallions finely sliced

With a fork, blend all this together thoroughly in a flat baking dish and toss in thick slabs of salmon, tuna or swordfish. Turn them over several times to coat them fully and marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours, the longer the better. Throw the fish on the BBQ or on a thick, cast-iron skillet (even better with ridges) and cook as little as possible.

The fish will be moist, spicy, tangy, slightly sweet and guaranteed to zing your mouth in different ways. Equally yummy served cold. In both cases you can jazz it up with a side of mango salsa: mash up 1 very ripe mango with a finely sliced and peeled cucumber + 1 finely chopped red chili, and chopped red onion (half), salt and juice of 1 lime.

It may sound sophisticated but it truly is dead easy. And it will taste sophisticated.

2 Responses to “Zing your fish”

  1. gilly

    02. May, 2010

    Probably more of a jolt than coffee needs to release! Actually, chili-flavored coffee sounds appealing! was it that awful? I absentmindedly rubbed my nose after chopping chilies recently, which was inordinately painful, but nothing in comparison to what an old friend of mine once endured upon peeing after chopping!

  2. Mary Bast

    02. May, 2010

    Oh Gilly, you gave me a good laugh. My second husband was a willing cook when it came to man-killing chilies and ALWAYS forgot to wash his hands (ouch!). I was about to forgive that when I noticed my freshly ground coffee one morning tasted like chillies and discovered he hadn’t wanted to bother chopping them so used the coffee grinder!!! That would be my EX-husband. :-)

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