Sunday, June 29, 2008

Seared Ono Over Cold Soba Noodles with Ponzu-Soy Dipping Sauce

Back to our tour of local fish--tonight we have Ono (commonly known as Wahoo, also sometimes called tigerfish), a close relative (cousin maybe?) of the king mackerel. Ono is Hawaiian for good to eat--so if someone tells you the food you cooked is "ono" it means they like it, not necessarily that they thought you made fish. :-) Also the more common name for this fish on the mainland --wahoo, is thought to have been derived from the early explorers pronunciation of the Hawaiian Island of Oahu. Ono has a pale pink to white flesh that turns white and flaky when cooked. It has a medium fat content, a fairly delicate, sweet flavor and is versatile--can be grilled, sauteed, broiled, poached, baked and can be used for sashimi.

As it was warm and a little humid, I wanted something cool and on the lighter side. I also was craving soba noodles and some Japanese flavors so I decided to coat the fish in Gomasio (a sesame seed mixture), sear it lightly and serve it over the cold soba noodles with sugar snap peas in a ponzu-soy sauce.
Soba Noodles with Ponzu-Soy Dipping Sauce
Serves 2
8 oz Japanese buckwheat soba noodles
1 cup cooked sugar snap peas fresh or frozen
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup Ponzu
1/4 cup Mirin
1/4 cup rice vinegar
juice and zest of 1 lime
1 tsp wasabi paste
chopped cilantro to garnish
Boil the soba noodles according to package directions. Meanwhile combine soy sauce, ponzu. mirin, rice vinegar, lime juice, zest and wasabi paste in a small bowl and mix until blended.
Drain noodles and run under cold water and add cooked sugar snap peas. Place noodles/peas in two bowls, pour 1/2 sauce over each bowl and top with fish (recipe below) Garnish with chopped cilantro.
Sesame Seared Ono
serves 2
2 (4-6 oz) Ono fillets
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Gomasio (sesame seed, sea weed, sea salt mix)
Heat a saute pan over medium high and add 1 Tbsp olive oil. Lightly coat fillets with 1 tsp olive oil. Place gomasio on a dinner plate and press fillets into seed mixture, coating fish lightly on each side. Place ono fillets in pan and sear each side about 2 min--so fish is still uncooked and slightly pink in center.

The verdict--light, flavorful and just the thing for a warm summer night. (Slurping cold noodles makes me happy!) Ono, being a pale fleshed fish, doesn't photograph as well as say a bright pink/red ahi when seared, but the taste was delicious. I didn't have fresh peas so I used a frozen steam bag and did them in the microwave. (and unfortunately I overcooked them a bit!) I have all the ingredients above in my pantry but you could eliminate some of them and still get a great flavor. (For example if you don't have mirin--use all rice vinegar or if you don't want to buy ponzu sauce (a Japanese citrus sauce) you can buy it already mixed with soy (ponzu shoyu) or use an additional lime. If you don't want to buy gamasio you can just use toasted sesame seeds to coat the fish--just be sure and salt the fish first).

This afternoon I put a box together to be shipped to Singapore for a person who did not get their Blogging By Mail package from the last event earlier this year. (BBM is a cool idea from my hero Stephenie at Dispensing Happiness where you give and receive goodies by mail from a blogger randomly assigned to you--hopefully there will be another round soon!) Max decided to "help"--see below:
"First you get the ribbon out--or you just chew on it for awhile...."

"Next you check out the shipping box or maybe chew on it for awhile..."

"Then you wrap the stuff--or maybe you just lay on top of the wrap and gifts for awhile..."

"Helping is very hard work you know--I feel a yawn coming on..."

"I'll just lay here and try to look cute and you can stop this nonsense and come rub my belly..."

So as you can imagine the process took longer than it should have! Hopefully no bite marks will be visible when the package is opened!

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