I made another trip to my favorite local farmer's market last Saturday to get my inspiration for this dish. I had ordered 3 Tilefish filets ahead of time and knew that was on the menu, but I had not yet decided how I was going to cook it. For those of you who don't know Tilefish, it is a nice firm white fish with a delicate, sweet flavor, because they feed on a variety of shellfish.
The pak choi and mushrooms looked so good again, so I decided to put an Asian twist on my dish. I had rice noodles in the pantry, so I then decided I would make a type of noodle bowl topped with the sauteed Tilefish.
For the noodle sauce (and for drizzling over the dish after serving), you will need:
- 5-6 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste)
- 1/4 cup Tamari or soy sauce
- 4 limes, juiced
- 1/2 cup sesame or almond oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
For the fish and vegetables (for 3 people), you will need:
- 3 - 1/2 pound Tilefish filets (or other firm, white fish)
- 2-4 tablespoons sesame oil to cook the fish and vegetables in
- 1 bunch broccolini, trimmed
- 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
- 4-6 large or 6-8 medium shiitake mushrooms, chopped
- 1 bunch oyster mushrooms, chopped (1 cup +-)
- 5-6 small bunches pak choi (leaves separated and left whole), or 2-3 cups chopped bok choi
- 1 package rice noodles
- pea shoots or any type of sprouts to garnish (optional)
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Starting with the sauce, put all ingredients in a glass measuring cup or carafe and blend with a hand blender or place in a blender and pulse on high until fully emulsified and set aside. This may be more sauce than is needed, and it can be kept for up to one week in the refrigerator. I have enjoyed using it on other salads this week.
Wash, dry and chop all the vegetables and set aside. Bring a large pot of water to boil for cooking the noodles in. While that is coming to a boil, wash and thoroughly dry the fish filets and place them on a plate and season them with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil in a hot skillet and begin by placing the fish in the pan skin side down. Let it get nice and crispy on one side (about 2-3 minutes) and flip it over to continue cooking on the other side. Lower the heat to medium and cover the skillet while the fish continues to cook. They should only take 5-7 minutes to finish cooking, depending on the thickness of the filets.
Meanwhile, once the water comes to a boil, put in the rice noodles and let them cook for 8-10 minutes. I found I needed to keep stirring them during the cooking time to avoid having them stick together!
In another skillet, heat another 1-2 tablespoons more oil and saute the broccolini for about 2 minutes, then add in the red bell pepper and mushrooms and cook for another 1-2 minutes. After this has almost fully cooked, toss the pak choi in and toss until everything is combined. The pak choi really only needs a minute or two to cook and keeps its nice green color if not overcooked. Keep the heat on a low simmer while everything else is still cooking.
Once the noodles have finished cooking, drain them well, place them back in the pot, pour about 1/2 cup of the sauce over them and toss. To serve, place about 1 cup of the dressed noodles in each bowl, top with the vegetables and fish filet, drizzle with a little more sauce and top with pea shoots or sprouts.
The feedback I got back from my family is that they wanted to try it next time with rice or quinoa. Please give me feedback of any changes or questions you may have after trying this dish!