Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mar 10th - Korean Curried Halibut stew

This was not a good idea. It happens. It does not happen too often but it happens to the best of us. I mean it tasted nice. The disappointment was the fish. We bough vacuum packed frozen Halibut steaks from this shop on Commercial. I have bought weevil infested Kale from that shop too. It is the veg market called Triple A Market next to Wazubee Cafe. It has given us some really poor produce and this fish ends our patronage for good. The owner pushed the fish on us as it was on sale. It took two days to defrost in the fridge. Since it was fish I did not want to nuke it to defrost and I will not counter defrost any meat ever.

My biochemist, snobby academic sister tells me that salmonella does not spontaneously occur in poultry or meat, that it would have to be infected to begin with for a poor storage to foster its propagation. Whatever! As you can never know, why take the risk!? She rarely cooks and worships at the altar of ready-made-Trader-Joe meals so I do not give much weight to her culinary advice. Though she is a faithful reader so.... V you are awesome! :^{}

Anyhoo, I wanted to sear the steaks to crisp them up and then simply serve the curry stew over it but D thought it would just be easier to cut it up and stew it with the veg. Fine. He cleaned it so I did not mind. It was ALL BONES! The skin was so elastic and difficult to remove. In the end, from two steaks, there was maybe 100-150 g of meat, not including the slice D took off his thumb. Then when we added it to the curry, it all but dissolved. There was not one piece of fish larger than a pea. It added great flavour to the curry which, without the traditional addition of chicken or beef, can be a bit sweet and one-dimensional. That's why I add butter :^D.

This was the recipe but I would highly recommend using something firmer like snapper. I might post the photo later but the disintegrated fish did not photograph well :^P but the carrots did. Actually, the original intention was a coconut fish curry like the one we had from Wiimaan Thai we had a couple of weeks ago but we seemed to have mysteriously run out of coconut milk. I thought that was impossible.

Start rice now.

Korean Curried Halibut Stew

5 cubes of Korean yellow curry sauce, standard issue. I like "Golden" brand best.
3 c water
250 g fish (do no use frozen Halibut steaks from Triple A Market)
1 russet potato (the thin skinned, yellow kind but any you like is fine. Do not use a baking potato though. They will melt away) cubed 1 inch
1 carrot, chopped roughly
1/2 onion, chopped roughly
1/2 zucchini because I had 1/2 zucchini left (Totally optional, you could add peas. My mom would use peas here.)
3 cloves garlic
2 chilies halved, with seeds, mouahahaha

In a bowl, add boiling water the cubes of curry and set aside to soften. Mix with a fork to break up.

In a large skillet, heat some neutral oil, enough, canola or peanut, medium-high. Add the onion, carrots, zucchini, potato. Stir occasionally to prevent burning or sticking. Add more oil as necessary. 5 minutes.

Add the garlic and chilies and toss for 2 minutes. You do not want to burn the garlic. Add the melted curry slurry, mixing with a fork to ensure you get all the curry. Add more boiling water to the bowl to ensure you get as much of it you can. Stir. Bring to a boil. The sauce thickens when it boils. Reduce to a simmer and add the fish.

Let simmer until the potatoes and carrots are fork tender. That means, you can easily pierce either with a fork with out too much effort and they also let go without prying.

Serve over rice.

We had a nice Spanish wine our friend gave us as a hostess gift for our Superbowl party. All honey and loveliness. Different from the new world Sauvignon Blancs. Nice!

Triple A Market
1626 Commercial Drive
Value: terrible, bug infested Kale, old peppers, stale carrots and mealy halibut
Cleanliness: dodgeriffic
Summary: I do not recommend you buy produce from this shop. Go to Norman's or Santa Barbera.

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