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The Flowers In The Sea

Serves: 1 people

Recipe Ingredients

280   Fresh salmon fillet
280   Fresh garoupa fillet
12   Romaine lettuce leaves
5   Sea urchin roe *
8   Baby artichokes
1 1/3 cups 315mlFish stock
  Salt - white pepper, vinegar, lemon juice
1 1/3 cups 315mlDry white wine
20   Chopped shallots
1 cup 237mlFish stock
1 1/3 cups 315mlFresh cream
75   Sea urchin roe - (optional)
  Salt - freshly-milled white
  Lemon juice
40   Butter
20   Lobster coral - (roe) **
4   Sea urchins - (optional)
  Vinegar/lemon juice - salt, oil
80   Watercress

Recipe Instructions

* (optional - lobster roe can be substituted, but it will change the overall flavor)

** or substitute a pinch of paprika for coloring purposes, although it will change over all flavor

This is another "not what it appears to be" dish. The main part looks kinda like a sea anemone. It's garnished with whole, boiled sea urchins--a nice touch. You should be able to find the sea urchin roe at a Japanese grocery. Remember the "shallots" called for are probably green onions.

Establishment: Hotel Riverside Plaza Tai Chung Kiu Road, Shatin, New Territories. Western Cuisine Practical Class Gold Award - Hot Fish Dish Chef: Chow Kwok-ting, Phil (Hotel Riverside Plaza) To prepare: 1. Slice salmon and garoupa fillets into thin squares about 9 to 10 cms wide and 3 to 4 mms thick. Each ball needs two slices of each fish. (Do not attempt to make them all exactly the same width, as the subsequent molding process is easier if the layers of fish diminish in size.) Season with salt and pepper. .

2. Blanch lettuce leaves by dipping in hot water, then refresh in iced water. Cut into squares of similar diminishing dimensions as fish slices. Each ball needs four lettuce squares.

3. Pile up alternating layers of fish and lettuce, starting with a bottom layer of salmon, then lettuce, garoupa, lettuce, salmon, lettuce, garoupa, and a final layer of lettuce. Place a dot of sea urchin or lobster roe (optional) 4. Lay each pile on a piece of cling wrap about 20 cms square. Molding upwards from the bottom layer, form each pile into a ball. Wrap it firmly, twisting a knot at top of cling wrap to hold molded ball in shape.

To cook: 1. To make sauce, reduce white wine with chopped shallots to thickness of essence. Add fish stock and reduce again. Add fresh cream, and remainder of sea urchin or lobster roe (optional). Strain sauce, add salt and pepper and a few drops of lemon juice. Stir in butter and lobster coral (or paprika). Keep warm.

2. To cook artichokes, bring a pan of water to the boil. Add some lemon juice drops, salt, a little plain flour and whole baby artichokes, and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes. Remove artichokes and discard green outer leaves. Carefully peel off purple-tinted inner leaves, trim them uniformly and set aside. Cut white artichoke bottoms so that they have flat bases.

3. (Optional) Boil sea urchins, adding a little vinegar or lemon juice, oil and salt to pan. (Please note that the very prickly urchins must be handled with care! Although they are edible garnishes, special eating tongs are recommended!) 4. Heat fish stock. Simmer wrapped balls for about five minutes, remove pan from heat and leave aside for 1 to 2 minutes. During simmering prepare the presentation plates as below.

To present:

1. Pour sauce onto plates (forming the "sea")

2. Place two artichoke bottoms on each plate , laying two layers of trimmed artichoke leaves around each bottom.

3. Remove fish balls from stock and make three cross-wise incisions on top of each. (Cling wrap will fall away, and cut "blossoms" reveal their layers and "pollen' of sea urchin roe.) Lifting it clear of its cling wrapping, place one fish ball on each artichoke bottom.

4. Add watercress and cooked sea urchin (or alternative garnish) to each plate.

From "Champion Recipes of the 1986 Hong Kong Food Festival". Hong Kong Tourist Association, 1986.

Joel Rapp


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