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Dining Tip: Morimoto's Braised Cod

The longtime Iron Chef serves this summery fish dish with ginger-soy glaze at many of his restaurants

Catherine Sweet
Posted: June 16, 2014

Note: This recipe originally appeared in the June 30, 2014 issue of Wine Spectator.

Braised Black Cod With Ginger-Soy Glaze

• 2 cups junmai sake
• 6 thin slices fresh ginger
• 6 black cod fillets, skin on, 6 to 7 ounces each
• 1 1/2 cups sugar
• 1 cup soy sauce
• 1 1/2 teaspoons tamari
• 3 tablespoons mirin
• 2 tablespoons julienned scallion
• 1 tablespoon julienned fresh ginger
• 6 sprigs kinome (optional; if the leaf is out of season or otherwise difficult to find, Morimoto says home cooks may substitute a very small amount of mint)

1. Pour the sake into a large, deep skillet or flameproof casserole. Add the sliced ginger and the fish fillets, skin side up. Cover and cook over high heat for 3 minutes. Add the sugar and cook over medium-high heat for 3 more minutes.

2. Pour the soy sauce and tamari over the fish fillets. Cook over medium-high heat, covered, for 5 minutes. Add the mirin and cook for 3 minutes longer. Be careful not to burn the fish; glaze the fillets by repeatedly spooning the thickened sauce over them while cooking. (The Japanese method of cooking this dish calls for putting a slightly smaller lid in the pot. The lid sits on the fish, helping to cook it, while allowing the sauce to bubble and reduce around the fillet. In kitchens in the United States, Morimoto watched as cooks spooned sauce over the fish. "I thought it was interesting, how they used a new technique to create the same result.")

3. With a slotted spatula, carefully transfer the black cod fillets to a platter. Check the fish to make sure it has no residual bones hidden in it.

4. If the braising liquid is not thick enough, keep cooking it over high heat until it becomes caramelized.

5. Place each fillet on a plate, and garnish each with 1 teaspoon scallion, 1/2 teaspoon julienned ginger and a sprig of kinome or mint leaves. Drizzle each plate with the ginger-soy braising liquid, and serve with steamed white rice. Serves 6.

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