March 26th, 2012

Ratatouille: Chef's Toque

Dinner: Poached Cod over Bok Choy and Fried Rice

I had a chance tonight to make a rather nice dinner dish. It was fun to make and pushed my Cantonese cooking skills a bit. Though it was a bit involved in the preparation, it only took a bit more than an hour to prepare solo from washing veggies to putting it on the table, with a little slack time.

Poached Cod over Bok Choy and Fried Rice

The fish was briefly seared in chili oil and then simmered in broth with ginger, black bean sauce, and a generous amount of garlic. After removing the fish, the sauce was thickened and hit with a squirt of lemon juice and basil to make a thin glaze.

The bok choy was quickly stir fried (sometimes called "dry sauté" preparation on American menus) with carrots, sprouts, and a little more black bean. The fried rice used folded egg, basil chiffonade, onion slivers, and green onions.

This was really a chance for me to practice combining multiple cooking techniques in a single dish. With the soft fish and vegetables cooked to different degrees, it also had a decent contrast of textures. These are some of the compositional goals for Chinese cuisine so it was a good test.

It came out rather well but the flavors could've been sharper. I also think I overcooked the bok choy; it became a bit soft and had too long to cool while the rest of the dish was assembled. Fortunately, the fish itself came out very nice and paired well with the rice. Practice practice!