Well, despite all my good intentions, I have spent a week at home in South Africa doing NOTHING but relaxing and eating – and not blogging at all! I have missed it but I really have not had the time… But I do realise that I have SOME responsibility to the readers and my blog is meant to be burning, so here is a fab little recipe that you can adapt to suit your level of enthusiasm (homemade mayo or olive paste) and pocket (can use any firm white fish).
Having just spent a week in South Africa, I was struck by the variety of seafood that we take for granted on our restaurant menus – and I mean middle of the road restaurants, not gourmet spectaculars. For example, in the UK you will usually find fish & chips (probably cod) and salmon on most menus, but beyond that, you need to visit a speciality seafood restaurant or shell out for something exotic like seabass. But in SA, you will almost always find grilled linefish (I was offered gurnard, Cape salmon and yellowtail last week), sole, kingklip and calamari in either steak or ring form – and those will be the bare minimum in the seafood department. When you go a bit more upmarket, this list will be augmented by salmon, trout and tuna – just heavenly! So I knew that for this edition of Is My Blog Burning? I wanted to make something using a familiar fish from home. I did toy with the idea of gurnard in a wholegrain mustard sauce, or maybe kingklip in a red pesto and almond crust (watch this blog for these recipes!!), but in the end I settled for the recipe below because it is just such a novel and attractive way to serve fish, while at the same time not being too difficult to make. Enjoy, and I will be back more regularly this week. Thanks again Wena for hosting! Look forward to all the yummy recipes.
GRILLED YELLOWTAIL SANDWICHES (yellowtail is also known as yellowtail kingfish) (serves 4)
8 large thin slices aubergine
freshly ground salt and pepper
4 large red peppers, cored, seeded and quartered lengthwise
4 thin slices of filleted yellowtail (or kingklip or any firm white fish)
½ cup good quality mayonnaise
¼ cup of olive paste
Arrange the aubergine in a single layer on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt. Leave for an hour, wipe off the salt and brush with olive oil and season with pepper.
Brush the peppers and fish with olive oil and season lightly. Using an oiled, heavy ridged cast iron pan, slide the prepared peppers, aubergine and fish in stages under a hot grill, turning each once until just cooked and starting to catch. Take care not to overcook the fish – it should stay moist.
Mix the mayonnaise and olive paste. Spread one side of the aubergines, peppers and fish with this mix and sandwich together a slice of aubergine, a slice of pepper, a piece of fish and finish with an aubergine.
Tuck fresh basil leaves into the sandwich before serving.