Posts Tagged ‘fish’

Savory Rhubarb… it can be done!

May 9, 2012

Happy Spring! And what a fortuitous assemblage of circumstances I had to celebrate.

  1. At the market last week I saw the first rhubarb of the season and did a dance. Then bought some and had to figure out what to make with it besides a pie or tart.
  2. I got a new bookshelf for my cookbooks and decided to look through one for some Spring inspiration when I found an old list of recipes I wanted to try tucked inside the cover. The most interesting is the one that follows.
  3. I had a whole striped bass in the freezer that I bought for an undetermined special event.
  4. I recently read through some japanese cookbooks and, as a result, not only had miso and soy sauce on hand, but also had a quick method of making fish stock in my repertoire (involving seaweed and tuna flakes).

With all of these events perfectly aligned on a free weekend, I defrosted the fish for a celebration of a savory rhubarb meal and a not-so-warm Spring.

Striped Bass with Rhubarb

Striped bass stuffed with rhubarb and onions baked in a sauce of miso, soy sauce, and fish stock.

Fish with Rhubarb and Onions

inspired by Amy’s recipe collection, originally published in the New York Times


  • 1T white miso paste
  • 1T soy sauce
  • 1t fish sauce
  • 1c fish stock
  • 1 fish, whole (striped bass)
  • 2T peanut oil
  • 1T ginger, minced
  • ½ onion, sliced
  • 1c rhubarb, chopped to ½"
  1. Heat the oil in a skillet.
  2. Toast the ginger in the oil until just brown.
  3. Add the onion and rhubarb and cook until soft.
  4. Blend the miso, soy sauce, and fish sauce in a bowl.
  5. Add the fish stock to the mixture.
  6. Add the liquid to the skillet and stir to cover the onion and rhubarb.
  7. Stuff the cavity of the fish with the onion and rhubarb and pour the sauce over the fish.
  8. Bake at 350F for 20 minutes, then turn the fish over and bake for 20 minutes more.


I modified this recipe from the original based on what I had in the house and it seemed to be forgiving in the vegetable department. I subbed a yellow onion for scallions but I think any onion-type food would do (mmm… shallots). I used striped bass but the original is made with tilapia. The biggest difference was the cooking method. You’re supposed to stir fry pieces of tilapia but I had a beautiful whole fish in the freezer so I chose to bake it stuffed. And what delicious success I had! Any white fish would probably work well. The important piece of this recipe is really the sauce and the rhubarb.


1 fish, 2 fish, red fish, BLUE FISH!

September 14, 2009

I have not had the opportunity to go fishing this year, but fortunately the CSA box last week had a giant bluefish fillet! Unforunately it was raining for two days so I was unable to grill it, but I think I baked it to perfection.

Sometimes bluefish is not very fresh so the smell is strong. In those cases it is good to use a strong sauce to combat the fish smell and taste. Pesto is a good choice as is tartar sauce or some form of cream sauce. This fish was so fresh I kept things minimal and am glad that I did. It is very tasty!

fresh bluefish baked with red peppers, leeks, olive oil, salt, pepper

fresh bluefish baked with red peppers, leeks, olive oil, salt, pepper


created on-the-fly by Sarah Johnson


1 bluefish fillet
1/2 to 1 red pepper julienned
1/2 to 1 leek chopped
olive oil

  1. Coat the bottom of a baking pan with a bit of olive oil.
  2. Rinse the fish, keep the skin on, and place it in the baking pan.
  3. Cover fish with the red pepper, leek, and chopped herbs.
  4. Drizzle a bit of oil, salt, and pepper over the fish.
  5. Bake at 350F for 15 to 25 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish. The key is not to overcook the fish because it will become tough. Fish needs to be cooked to at least 145F according to the US FDA.

That’s it. That’s all there is to it. Almost too simple to write down, but it’s a staple bluefish recipe of mine and it just turned out so beautifully.

The fun always comes in the creative experimentation. Typically I will use this recipe with mayonnaise and lemon juice spread over the fish before the vegetables are added. It’s good with any kind of bell peppers as well as tomatoes and onions instead of leeks. The herbs and spices are, of course, open to taste preferences. Some paprika on top might be nice instead of black pepper. Have fun!

Tuna Steaks

July 30, 2009

My favorite fish to make is tuna. It’s delicious, it’s beautiful, and it’s a challenge I have not yet met. I want to make a perfectly seared tuna steak at home some time. Until I do, I will not rest. My most recent attempt was very good and cooked just enough to be rare-ish, but not perfect.

asian style tuna steaks grilled to medium doneness

asian style tuna steaks grilled to medium doneness

Seared Tuna Steaks with Wasabi-Green Onion Mayonnaise

from Bon Appetit (2004), courtesy of Epicurious

1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons minced green onions (white and green parts)
1 teaspoon (or more) wasabi paste
2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
4 8-ounce tuna steaks (preferably ahi; each about 1 inch thick)

  1. Mix mayonnaise, wasabi, and onions and chill covered.
  2. Whisk teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, and rice vinegar and marinate the tuna at room temperature for 30 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Drain tuna and place on a grill brushed with vegetable oil. 4 minutes per side will cook the tuna to a medium doneness.
  4. Serve with the wasabi mayonnaise.

In my excitement over the tuna steaks I made some errors in preparing this recipe which I now call my ‘variations’.

First, I misread teaspoon for tablespoon and so added a tablespoon of wasabi paste. Lucky for me I love wasabi! The sting of it made for an exciting meal.

Second, I completely left out the soy sauce in the mayonnaise. I was turned off by the mayonnaise taste so the soy sauce probably would have been a useful addition.

My only intentional variation was the use of red scallions instead of green onions since I had them from the foodshare this week. I imagine some ginger in the marinade would also add good flavor. For some flourish, sesame seeds on the outside of the tuna would be attractive and add a small crunch to the finished product.