The simple act of curing fluke makes a fish, that to me is unpleasantly chewy and watery when raw, very silky and elegant. We combine it with sea urchin, mandarin orange olive oil, grapefruit zest, and yuzu kosho, which all work to highlight the favorable change in texture.
INGREDIENTS (Serves 4)
- 150g kosher salt
- 50g sugar
- 170g sushi-grade fluke fillet
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 ¾ teaspoons Arbequina olive oil
- 60g sea urchin roe
- ¼ teaspoon yuzu kosho
- Rasps of White grapefruit zest
- Combine the salt and sugar in a bowl until thoroughly incorporated.
- Spread half the mixture on a plate or baking dish that’s about thesis of the fish fillet.
- Lay the fish on the mixture and cover with the remaining mix. Make sure the fish is fully coated.
- Let cure in the refrigerator for about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Rinse the fish and pat it dry.
- Put it on a small wire rack set over a plate, or on a paper towel-lined plate, and let dry in the refrigerator for 5 to 6 hours, until very dry and firm.
- To slice the fish, first grease your knife with a bit of olive oil – just a teaspoon or so – to keep it from sticking.
- Slice the fillet into strips about 1/8 inch wide, then chop into irregular 1/8 inch cubes. Don’t worry about being too precise.
- Toss the fluke with the Arbequina and mandarin orange olive oils in a bowl, then divide the mixture into 2 portions.
- Place a 3-inch ring mold in the center of a plate or shallow bowl.
- Take a spoonful or two of fluke and gently press it against the inside of the mold to make a little border.
- Spoon half the sea urchin roe into the center of the mold and gently spread 1/8 teaspoon of the yuzu kosho over the top of it.
- Add a few rasps of grapefruit zest, then cover it with the rest of the first portion of fluke. When you remove the ring mold, the sea urchin roe should be totally hidden.
- Plate the second portion, then serve.
Practical Note: You’ll need to start curing the fist at least 6 hours before you plan on serving it. Even better if done a day ahead.