Give a man a fish and feed him for a day; teach him how to cook it and he'll make you dinner! That may not be the original quote, but you know how things go on the internet...
Made this for our Valentine's dinner last night. Remarkably easy, remarkably good, remarkably healthy.
THAI SEA BASS
2 whole sea bass (not Chilean, which is actually a fish called Patagonian Toothfish ), gutted - ask fishmonger to do this
handful of coriander
1 red chili, sliced diagonally
4 lemongrass stalks, sliced diagonally
ginger, 1inch, cut into thin strips
3-4 garlic cloves, peeled & halved
4-5 kaffir lime leaves
2 teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoon olive oil
sea salt & black pepper
In a mortar (or a bowl if you don't have one), put the coriander, sliced chili and lemongrass, ginger, garlic, sesame oil and lime. Mash with the pestle (or the back of a spoon) - you're just helping to release flavors, you're not making a paste.
Rinse the fish well inside and out. Pat it dry with a paper towel. Using a very sharp knife (serrated helps) score the fish 5 or 6 times on each side (score means to cut a notch in - not through). Then sprinkle a little sea salt in the cavity and on each side - and a few twists of black pepper.
Just serve as is! You can remove the fish to a plate, but we just put the package on a board, opened it at the table and started to dig in. The skin peels off very easily, just slide your knife or fork under a bit and gently pull back. The meat of the fish will be tender and flavourful. Do be careful of bones. After you've eaten the meat from the top half, you'll see the long center bone which you can lift out easily and continue to eat the meat from the other side. Or you can flip over and start from that side.
And for dessert - blueberry parfait. No chocolate this Valentine's Day, but lots of delicious.
Another fish quote to finish: "I don't drink water because of the disgusting things fish do in it." W.C. Fields. Cheers - Happy Friday!