Friday, November 18, 2011

Mackerel Miso-ni (Poached Mackerel with Miso)

When I was browsing through a few Japanese cookbooks, I realised that the commonly used ingredients for seasoning are soy, mirin, sake, miso, rice vinegar and dashi. If you have these in your pantry, you can cook up quite a number of Japanese dishes, and I find them quite indispensable. I am no expert at Japanese cuisine, but reading all about the different cooking styles and preparation methods is an enjoyable learning experience for me.

So, I came across a recipe for Mackerel Miso-ni in this book called "Classic Japanese" by Masaki Ko. It's a typical Japanese home-style dish where mackerel is poached in a miso and dashi broth with ginger, and what you get is a creamy, buttery, umami-tasting sauce that blends harmoniously with the flavour and texture of the mackerel. It's so tasty that I could probably eat just that with a bowl of white rice, and nothing else. So easy and delicious, this is now a new family favourite!

Mackerel Miso-ni (Poached Mackerel with Miso)
Adapted from Classic Japanese by Masaki Ko


300g (10oz) mackerel cutlet
1/2 cup instant dashi
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tbsp sake
1/2 inch ginger, peeled and sliced thinly
3 tbsp miso (darker miso is preferred, but you can use any type)
1/2 inch ginger, peeled and finely shredded, for garnish
1/2 scallion, sliced, for garnish


Soak the shredded ginger in cold water for 5 minutes, and then drain well.

Fold a sheet of foil just smaller than the diameter of a shallow pan. Pour the dashi, sugar and sake into the pan and bring to a boil. Gently lower the mackerel into the pan and arrange the sliced ginger on top. Spoon the soup over the fish and place the foil over it. Simmer for 5-6 minutes.

Dissolve the miso in a bowl with some of the soup from the pan. Pour it back into the pan and simmer for 12 minutes more, spooning the soup over the fish occasionally as it cooks.

Carefully transfer the fish onto a serving plate and pour the remaining soup (or thickened sauce) over the top. Garnish with shredded ginger and scallions. Serve hot with white rice.

When boiling fish, gently loser it into boiling water. Do not cook from cold as the fish will smell unpleasant and add bitterness to the soup.


Quay Po Cooks said...

I want to try this fish. Your photos let the deliciouness of the dish shines through. Good job.

Nami | Just One Cookbook said...

Fern, what are you talking about! You are already THE expert in Japanese cooking, and you DO make really good Japanese food!!! Don't be so modest, dear. :-) You are right - our condiments are always same, but slightly different measurement for each food... that's why we don't say "teriyaki sauce" because everything becomes teriyaki sauce. ;-)

Fern @ To Food With Love said...

@Quay Po: Thanks for your kind words :)
@Nami: Still learning from you, girl...I'm an expert only in my own home :D

Jayanthy Kumaran said...

wow..cant wait to try this...sounds hearty..:) excellent cliks..
Tasty Appetite

Chopinand @ ChopinandMysaucepan said...

I love mackerel although my fave is to either pan sear or grill it as it can be a little fishy even though the fish is very fresh.

Fern @ To Food With Love said...

True. I love grilled mackerel too. I think the miso in this dish should mask any fishiness from the mackerel.