Top Chef Season 1, Episode 4: Mirin Glazed Mahi-Mahi
This week was super simple and for that, I thank Top Chef and the episode winner, Tiffani Faison. I have had a hard time doing this Top Chef challenge on a weekly basis, as I have been traveling to NY from DC every weekend since the beginning of June (and I have 2 more weeks of traveling), so it has been hard for me to cook on the weekends. But I am not traveling anymore after the weekend of the 10th until I move back home to NY on August 13 (I'm not counting down the days or anything).
For this week's challenge, the cheftestants were assigned the task of creating a gourmet meal that could be reheated in the microwave. Now, if I am not mistaken, this was before the blatent GE/Glad Bag/Dr. Pepper/Etc/Etc/Etc product placement, so this may have been a geniune challenge idea by the producers. But I could be wrong.
The cheftestants were given a budge of $50 and then had 90 minutes to cook, package, and refrigerate their dishes. The next day, they have 10 minutes to prepare and plate their dishes to serve to the Oakland East Bay Junior League. Tiffani's simple dish of Mirin Glazed Escobar (Seabass) won the ladies and the judges over.
It won me over, too.
I cannot believe how simple this dish is. It called for some exotic ingredients such as Shaoxing Wine (huh?) and purple shisho sprigs (oh, I'm fresh out of my batch of purple shisho sprigs...), so I improvised. None of the fishmongers (favorite. word. ever.) were selling sea bass or any fish remotely like it, so I just got mahi mahi.
10 minutes people. A delicious dish in ten. minutes. And suprisingly, even though I'm sure the sea bass was fantastic in the microwave as well, this fish held up very well to being reheated. Tasty, tasty, tasty.
Top Chef, I love you. And next week's dish scares me. I don't think it will take 10 minutes. It has about 30 ingredients, 1 of which is date syrup. Where do I get date syrup???
Next Week: Moroccan Cubano Pork Sandwich
Mirin Glazed Escobar adapted from Top Chef
6 tbsp mirin
1/4 cup white miso paste
1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
1/4 cup sherry
Two 6 oz pieces mahi mahi
1 tbsp vegetable oil
2 fresh parsley
In a cointainer large enough to hold the fish, combine the mirin, miso paste, teriyaki sauce, and shaxing. Put the fish in the marinade and refrigerate, covered, overnight.
In a medium saute` pan or skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Remove the fish from the marinade, scraping off the excess, and pat dry. Put the fish in the pan and cook, without turning, for three minutes until well browned on the bottom. Turn and cook the other side for about 3 minutes until well browned and just cooked through (the fish will flake easily when prodded with a knife). Turn the heat down to medium if the fish is browning too quickly.
Place the fish on serving plates and garnish with purpole shiso and salad burnet sprigs. Serve immediately.