Tag Archives: fish

Hormone Balancing Sesame Tuna Salad

During a stressful time where i am a moody little wotsit; tired, teary and lethargic I wanted to use ingredients which would help to bring me balance – cheer me up, keep my skin and hair healthy, calm me down and taste delicious. Balanced hormones keep weight down, keep us happy, ensure our skin and hair are clear, healthy and strong. Hormone inbalance can disrupt sleep, deplete energy and reduce the strength of our immune system so you can see its important to look after our hormones all the time!

This tuna salad did just that. Just cooking and putting it together cheered me up – its a very colourful salad. According to some research, Omega-3 rich foods such as tuna can have a positive effect on mental health reducing depression. Cooking the sesame tuna in coconut oil rather than another oil also helps to balance hormones – good for the skin, easy to digest, quick source of energy and protects against bad bacteria. The avocado is also great – its high potassium, vitamins B and E and folic acid are also essential im maintaining hormonal balance. Dark green veggies are powerful sources of antioxidents – here i use kale and broccoli. I could use up a whole blog post on how fabulous kale is so i’ll go into detail another time – suffice to say its amazing! The brightly coloured veggies including radish, mango and carrot are great sources of vitamin C too.  

Serves 2

Tuna

2 Tuna Steaks
1 Garlic Clove – finely sliced
2 Red Chillis – finely sliced
2cm Ginger – peeled and sliced into matchsticks
1tbsp Sesame Oil
2tbsp Coconut Oil
Handful Fresh Coriander – chopped
20g Cashew Nuts
3tbsp Sesame Seeds (I used black and white)
2 Spring Onions – sliced

Salad
200g Kale – I massaged this is a little cold water to soften the leaves slightly
1 Mango – chopped into chunks
8 Radishes – sliced
½ head broccoli – chopped into florets and cooked to al dente to retain crunch
1 avocado – diced
Handful of Coriander – chopped
1 nest of Whole-wheat Rice Noodles – to cook, place in boiling water for 3 minutes

Dressing
1 Chilli – diced
2tbsp Soy Sauce
1tbsp Lime juice
1tbsp Maple Syrup
3tbsp Sesame Oil
1tsp AllSpice

This is the straight forward part! Marinate the tuna in the chilli, ginger, garlic and sesame oil – place in the fridge for at least an hour. Make the dressing my mixing all ingredients together and seasoning to taste. Bring al the salad ingredients together making sure everything is mixed together and pour the dressing on the top. Leave in the fridge to infuse – not for too long though as you don’t want everything to go soggy – I would say 20 minutes whilst you prep and cook the tuna is fine. Meanwhile, toast the cashews in a dry pan for a few minutes, let them brown slightly and start to smell toasty! Leave to one side. Once the tuna is marinated remove from the marinade (I poured the marinade into the salad for extra taste and so as not to waste as those lovely flavours). Mix the sesame seeds together in a bowl and place the tuna steaks into the seeds to cover on all sides. Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan and fry the sesame coated tuna for 3 minutes on each side. This should ensure the steaks are cooked medium and the sesame seeds are nice and toasted.

To bring together, place the dressed salad on the base of the bowl and top with the tuna steak. Scatter the cashews, remaining coriander and spring onions on top. I defy anyone not to enjoy this salad – its fabulously nutritious, tasty, light and pretty!

Korean Salmon

As i sit on the train up to St Albans to see my bestie Zoe I am writing this blog as a reminder of the best chilli sauce i have ever tasted. Its super easy and versatile and uses one of my favourite ingredients at the moment – gochujang paste. I think I have mentioned it before in a blog – its Korean Chilli Paste – rich, spicy, and sweet all at the same time.

The inspiration for this recipe is JinJuu which is a brilliant Korean restaurant in Carnaby St London. I’ve been a few times and always get the Tofu Bibimbap and the Sticky Chicken wings – AMAZING!

Anyway, Judy Joo, the chef behind the place has a cookbook which i bought for Elix for Christmas and it is packed with tasty recipes.

This recipe is a simple grilled Salmon dish – its the Gochujang glaze which makes it so special. After making a batch of the glaze I also used it to marinade some chicken and drizzled it over some lightly fried tofu – both worked and were delicious!

For the Gochujang Glaze
3tbsp Gochujang Paste
2tsbp Mirin
2tbsp Soy Sauce
2tbsp Sugar
2 Cloves Garlic – grated
1/2 tbsp Sesame Oil
1 tsp Grated Ginger
1 tsp Black Pepper

Mix everything together! Yep – thats it, so straight forward!
To make the salmon dish, I brushed the sauce generously over the salmon fillets and grilled for 8 minutes. To serve, scatter over some spring onion slices and sesame seeds and plate alongside some brown rice and greens.

Our Fish Nugget Tacos

I’m sharing this recipe as it’s one of my favourites, I cook it often and always forget which recipe book the crumb mix is from (spend ages leafing through dozens of books) and Elix and I made it for Christmas eve dinner and Mum wants the recipe.

The crumb recipe is inspired by Silvena Rowe’s Za’atar crusted Cod and I pair this with a Cauliflower fattoush style salad and tortilla wraps. I like to think of this as a Middle East meets Mexico dish – flavours of the Middle east delivered in a Mexican style taco.
You can buy za’atar in most supermarkets (even in Toots!) but you can also make it ypurslef by mixing 1tsp sumac, ground cumin, dried marjoram and toasted sesame seeds with 2tsp fresh thyme or oregano.

Serves 2

For the Fish Nuggets

2 Cod/Haddock fillets – cut into bitesize pieces
100g Pistachios – blitzed
3tbsp Breadcrumbs
1tbsp Za’atar
1tsp Nigella Seeds
2 eggs
Plain Flour

For the Salad

1/2 Cauliflower – chopped into tiny florets
Handful Parsley, Mint, Coriander – chopped
1/2 cucumber – chopped
8 Radishes – thinly sliced
8 Cherry Tomatoes – quartered
Seeds of a Pomegranate
Juice of a Lemon
Olive Oil
Sumac

Blitz the ingredients for the crumb together until coarse. Start yourself a little conveyor belt of bowls of plain flour, beaten eggs and the crumb. Lightly coat the fish pieces in flour, followed by egg and finally the crumb and place to rest on a plate.
Make the salad by mixing together the ingredients and making the dressing of lemon juice and olive oil with a sprinkling of sumac for a little extra zest.
To fry the fish, heat a large frying pan with vegetable oil and fry the fish in batches until the crumb is golden and crispy. The fish should take 3-4 minutes on each side to cook through. To be healthier, you can also bake the fish in an oven of 200 degrees for 25 minutes.
To serve, place the fish and salad inside a tortilla wrap with some cucumber and mint yoghurt or have as a simple salad.

Jungle Curry

I’m getting more and more excited about my November trip to Thailand. David Thompson’s Thai Food Cookery book as helped this along and I spent quite a bit of time this weekend leafing through the beautiful book – so many salads, curries and soups to choose from. The book includes a recipe for Jungle Curry – my recipe below is not David Thompson’s one – I needed something quick and easy after a busy weekend and his will take more patience, effort and specialist ingredients – one for another time!

Jungle Curry originates from North Thailand, it doesnt include coconut milk (apparently there are no coconuts there, I assume because its inland and a mountainous region – I will check in November and confirm!) so is hotter, less creamy and less sweet than the more commonly found green, yellow and red thai curries.

The recipe I designed was also healthy and nutritious.  Chillis in the paste are good to supress appetite, the paste also includes ginger and garlic aswell as a sprinkling of turmeric – all good to aid digestion and promote a strong immune system. Brown rice accompanied the curry – unprocessed whole grains are important sources of fiber and protein. For cooking I used coconut oil instead of vegetable/sunflower oil as this is good for balancing cholesterol and light in flavour. I made the curry with fish (I used hake), mange tout and baby corn – a good balance of protein and vitamins. The paste will work with any protein and vegetable combination  though. Next on the list to try are chicken, mushroom and baby corn aswell as mixed vegetable (aubergine, cauliflower, peas and squash).  

I researched a few recipes for the Jungle paste – and came up with one which isnt too hot but balances the sweet, salt, sour, hot flavours found in Thai food.

Serves 4
500g sustainable fish fillets cut into 1 inch/bitesize pieces – i used hake
1tbsp coconut oil
1 large handful baby corn – halved
1 large handful mange tout – halved
2tbsp fish sauce
2tsp palm sugar
1 tsp lime juice
1tsp tamarind water (mix 1/2 tsp tamarind with 1tbsp water)
For the Paste
1 green chilli
1 red chilli
8 shallots
4 cloves garlic
6cm ginger
1 tbsp lemongrass paste/2 sticks lemongrassed bruised and diced
1tsp paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1tsp cumin seeds
1tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp shrimp paste

Cook the veggies for a couple of minutes in boiling water and set to one side (this way you can pop them in with the fish at the end and as they are part cooked will be ready when the fish is).
To make the paste simply blitz everything together until a smooth paste forms.
Cook the paste for a few minutes in 1tbsp coconut oil until fragrant and sizzling. Add in the fish sauce, tamarind water, lime juice, palm sugar and check the seasoning. If you feel something isnt balanced (too sweet or sour, then balance by adding extra acidity – lime or extra sugar to balance a sour taste). Stir through. Add the vegetables and fish (if you are using a different protein add this now too) – cook through, fish should take 8 minutes or so, chicken will take 10 minutes.
Dish out with brown rice and sprinkle with fresh coriander.

Sesame & Coconut Fish

I have had such a busy weekend this weekend including eating out at my two favourite restaurants (Honest Burger and The Ivy Market Grill) with my two favourite people  ☺️ and so tonight stayed in and fancied fish or seafood, as I haven’t had Asian food in a while I picked this steamed sesame and coconut fish dish. This is a Burmese recipe and its very delicious and easy, perfect for today’s warm Summer evening as it is light, tasty and reminds me of eating al fresco in Myanmar.

Serves 2
2 fillets of white fish – I used basa but cod or haddock would work well too
1 tsp ginger
1 clove garlic
70ml warm water
40g dessicated coconut
1tbsp toasted sesame seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric
salt and pepper
1tbsp flour
1tbsp lemon juice
1tbsp coriander leaves – chopped

Blitz the ginger, garlic and coconut with the water until a paste. Mix in the sesame seeds, coriander, salt, pepper, flour, lemon juice and turmeric.
Place each fish fillet on a sqaure of foil and cover with the coconut mixture. Wrap the fish up into a parcel so sealed.
Steam above boiling water for 10 minutes.
Serve with veggies and rice.

A Little Parcel of Loveliness

Something different for dinner last night – no carbs and no sugar but lots of tasty goodness.

Here is my recipe for Baked Miso Basa Fillet with Mange Tout and Sesame. This recipe is delicious, light, contains one of your 5-a-day  and is healthy and nutritious.

Serves 2
2 Basa Fillets – can also use Cod or Seabass
4tbsp Dark Miso Paste
2tsp Sesame Oil
1tsp Agave Nectar
2cm Grated Ginger
Large Handful of Mange Tout
3 Spring Onions – sliced
Sesame Seeds to sprinkle

Mix together the miso, sesame oil, ginger, agave and marinate the fish fillets for 10 minutes ensuring the fish is completely covered.
Cut 2 large sheets of greasproof baking paper and lay flat. Place a handful of mange tout on each sheet. Top with the fish pouring any excess marinade on top.
Wrap the two parcels up with string ensuring no air can get in. Place in the oven at 180 degs for 10-12 minutes until cooked through.
To serve sprinkle sesame seeds and spring onions on top. We ate alongside lightly stir fried mini-corn, pak choi and chilli with some cauliflower rice.

Another Asian Dinner – Laksa with Seabass

A cheeky little friend of mine jokes that all I ever cook and eat is Asian food – to be fair after a trio of home cooked Indian, Chinese and Vietnamese meals over the last few nights I can’t really argue and so i thought i would live up to this and blog about a Rick Stein Thai Laksa that  

 i made this evening for dinner.
I’ve been feeling poorly for the past few days and this soup was full of fresh herbs, comforting chilli heat and healthy fish and vegetables so was perfect to get me feeling better.

  
Ingredients (serves 2)
Soup
Groundnut Oil
450ml Stock (I used vegetable but Chicken or Fish would work too)
50g Egg Noodles
400ml Coconut Milk
50g Beansprouts
4 Spring Onions – sliced
2 Handfuls of Vegetables – I used mini-corn, tenderstem brocolli and pak choi
2 Fillets Seabass
1 Handful chopped mint, basil and coriander
Chilli Sambal (optional)
Lime Wedges to garnish
Laksa Paste
25g Shrimp Paste
3 Red Chillies
2 Lemongrass Stalks
25g Unroasted Cashew Nuts
2 Cloves Garlic
2.5cm Ginger
1tsp Ground Turmeric
1tsp Ground Coriander
1 Small Onion
Juice 1 Lime

Start with the laksa paste and blend all the ingredients in a food processor adding a couple of teaspoons of cold water if necessary until a smooth paste forms.
Fry the paste in some groundnut oil and stir for 10 minutes until fragrent. Add the stock and simmer for another 10 minutes.
Pop the noodles and vegetables into boiling water until almost cooked through (they will finish off later in the  main soup) and drain.
Add the coconut milk to the soup and mix. Add in the spring onions, beansprouts, noodles and vegetables and leave on a low heat.
Fry the seabass, skin side down in some olive oil for a couple of minutes on each side.
Spoon the laksa into a noodle bowl and sprinkle the fresh herbs on top. Place the seabass on top and if you like extra heat spoon some sambal and garnish with the lime.

We had seabass but the original recipe suggests grilled cod – I think anything would be lovely – mixed vegetables, tofu, chicken, prawns, mussels or beef – I think next time we will definitely be trying mixed seafood and if I get my way…tofu!