Fresh kahawai, iki’d and bled immediately upon capture, is perfect for this dish. It has a great taste and the medium textured flesh works well with the biggish flavours. With the natural sweetness of beetroot, coupled with the saltinessof the black olive vinaigrette, there’s plenty going on here. I also love the combination of warm fish served on the cool, slightly sharp salad.
This recipe is from Al Brown's book Go Fish, published by Random House and available at good booksellers.
|1 kg||Beetroot, skin on|
|¼ cup||Malt vinegar|
Black olive vinaigrette
|2 Tbsp||Balsamic vinegar|
|2 Tbsp||Shallots, finely diced|
|1 ½ Tbsp||Sugar|
|150 ml||Olive oil|
|½ cup||Black olives, good-quality, stones removed and cut into slivers|
|¼ cup||Fresh mint, finely chopped|
|6||Zucchini, small to medium,|
|1||Olive oil, for grilling|
|6||Fresh kahawai fillets, 150g each|
|1 to taste||Salt and freshly ground black pepper|
To prepare the beetroot
- In a suitable saucepan, place the beetroot, sugar and vinegar. Cover with
- cold water and place on high heat. Bring up to the boil, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until soft through the centre (about 1 hour).
- Once cooked, run under cold water for a minute or so, then peel off the skin. Refrigerate until required.
Black olive vinaigrette
- In a medium bowl, place the vinegar, shallots and sugar.
- Whisk together, then slowly drizzle in the olive oil while whisking until incorporated.
- Fold in the black olives and mint, and season with a good couple of grinds of black pepper. Refrigerate until serving.
- Heat the chargrill (or a griddle top or skillet). Slice the zucchini on an angle into rounds about 1cm thick.
- Place in a bowl and toss with a little olive oil and salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Cook on a hot chargrill for a couple of minutes on each side until golden and slightly charred. Remove and cool to room temperature.
To cook and serve
- Heat the flat top of the barbecue or place a skillet or frying pan on medium-high heat.
- Season the kahawai and cook until golden on each side and just cooked through.
- While the fish is cooking, slice the beetroot into 5mm thick rounds. Place on a platter if serving family style or put 4–5 rounds on each serving plate.
- Carefully place the chargrilled zucchini in a large bowl, then spoon some of the olive vinaigrette over and toss to coat. Place this on the beetroot, then top with the kahawai. Drizzle a little more vinaigrette over the fish and serve pronto.