Carpaccio of Suffolk Cod with Shallot, Ginger and Soy Vinaigrette
Isn’t this a pretty plate of food? It not only looks good but tastes absolutely magnificent. You might frown at the thought of raw cod, but take my word it’s incredibly delicious. The secret is that the fish must be ultra fresh. Only serve fish raw if you know exactly where it comes from and how old it is. Most fish could be served in this carpaccio style. If you cannot find cod try halibut, lemon sole, mackerel or salmon. Another top tip is to serve the carpaccio on a very cold plate.
On the 10th April this year British Larder joined forces with Food Safari UK for a wonderful catch and cook event. It was a glorious spring day and we went out on the Panther with Mark Fleton to catch cod off the Suffolk coast at Walberswick.
Polly has asked me to prepare something easy and tasty for the boat trip and then later that afternoon I did a further cookery demonstration of Keralan Style Cod Loin En-Papilotte and Orange Soused Herrings.
I decided to take a jar of this incredibly delicious shallot, ginger and soy vinaigrette on board so that it could be served with wafer thin slithers of raw freshly caught cod.
I have had this recipe for many years and it’s interesting on how I have changed it along the way. At a certain stage of my cooking career I used to make this vinaigrette without the whole pieces of the diced shallot, crushed garlic and ginger.I used to puree it very finely, leave it to infuse and then pass it through a fine sieve to extract the flavour and obtain a smooth liquid.
I have now returned to the chunky vinaigrette with a bit of a bite, texture and contrast. It’s incredibly simple but immensely complex in flavour. This vinaigrette works very well with various ingredients such as carpaccio of beef, raw wafer thin slithers of beef or tossed into a salad of char-grilled chicken breast, finely sliced pak-choy, sauteed shiitake mushrooms and bean shoots.
Soy and Shallot Vinaigrette
- 3 Banana shallots, finely diced
- 1 clove of garlic, finely minced
- 20g fresh ginger, finely minced
- 50ml soy sauce
- 100ml roasted sesame oil
- 100ml peanut or sunflower oil
- 50ml sherry vinegar
- Juice of one lemon
Using a jar with a tight fitting screw top lid place all the ingredients in the jar, do not season, remember that soy sauce is salty, shake the jar vigorously, taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Set aside and let the vinaigrette infuse for 1 hour before using.
Food Fanatics Tip
This vinaigrette is at it's best after a day or two as the flavours will develop. If you have leftovers of the vinaigrette stir it into a beef stir-fry with udon noodles, it makes a delicious stir-fry sauce. The vinaigrette will keep for up to 10 days refrigerated and works very well with various ingredients. These include carpaccio of beef, raw wafer thin slithers of beef or tossed into a salad of char-grilled chicken breast, finely sliced pak-choy, sauteed shiitake mushrooms and bean shoots.
Fresh Cod Carpaccio
- 320g super fresh cod, skin and pin bones removed
- Maldon Sea Salt
- 1tbs peanut or sunflower oil
- Soy and Shallot Vinaigrette
- Zest of one lemon
- Freshly cut Mustard Cress
- Sprinkling of Wild Sumac
Place 4 serving plates in the fridge to ensure that they are very cold.
Slice the fresh raw cod into wafer thin slices using a sharp knife.
Place the wafer thin slices of cod on the chilled plate leaving 2-4 mm spaces between each slice for the marinade. I normally serve 60 - 80g of raw cod per portion for a starter.
Carefully brush a drop of the oil over the fish and season with the Maldon sea salt.
Stir the vinaigrette and use a teaspoon to spoon the vinaigrette around the cod on the plate. Garnish the cod with a scattering of freshly grated lemon zest, a sprinkle of wild sumac and a scattering of mustard cress.
Serve immediately with freshly baked rye or sour dough bread.