Sunday, May 9, 2010


This idea is for Marlena. She has become the Japanese food Maven of late. I thought I'd take her Jewish herring recipe and tweak it into a Japanese dish.

I really like marinated herring and so I was excited to make this recipe. This has a light sweet and sour marinade the Herring marinates in. Well, I couldn't find Herring fillets. I called around but no one had any. I know that the Vietnamese markets probably do but I wouldn't know a Herring amongst the other fish and with the language barrier I don't think I would find anyone who could tell me. I ended up at Oto's Market and they didn't have Herring but had Mackerel (Saba). Both are rather oily and strong flavored fishes so I thought this might work. I'm happy to say Mackerel was a good substitute for the Herring.

Marinated Herrings
serve 4-6

2-3 herrings, filleted
1 onion thinly sliced
juice of 11/2 lemons
2Tbs white wine vinegar or rice wine vinegar
11/2Tbsp sugar
10-15 black peppercorns
10-15 allspice berries
1/4tsp mustard seeds
3 bay leaves torn
soy sauce (optional)

soak the herrings in cold water for 5 minutes, then drain. Pour water over to cover and soak for 2-3 hours then drain. Pour water over to cover then soak in the refrigerator overnight. This takes out a lot of the strong flavor and mellows out the fish.
Hold the soaked herrings under cold running water and rinse well.
Cut each fish into bite size pieces , (I left the mackerel fillet whole) then place the pieces in a glass bowl or shallow dish.

Sprinkle the onion over the fish, add the lemon juice, vinegar, sugar , peppercorns, allspice, mustard seeds, bay leave and salt (I added a splash of soy sauce at this point).
Add enough water to just cover. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 2 days to let the flavors blend.
Serve with some good pumpernickel bread for a light lunch or brunch.

The traditional way to serve the marinated herring (mackerel).

To make the sushi, I sliced the mackerel very thin and laid it on top of the nigiri. The rice is seasoned with rice wine vinegar, sugar and a little salt. I can't give you a recipe since I just go by taste. Mix the vinegar,sugar and salt together tweaking it until it suits your taste. Heat the vinegar mixture in the microwave for a few seconds just to get the sugar to melt. Sprinkle by spoonfuls over hot rice mixing after each addition of the vinegar mixture (su). Let rice cool, taste and add more vinegar if necessary then shape into oval rice balls. We hands slightly before shaping the nigiri to keep rice from sticking to your hands. Lay the mackerel on top and serve with wasabi, ginger and soy sauce if desired.

Happy Mother's Day !!

Mel and Shankari both have wonderful recipes for you this week also.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

That looks really good! I'll have to eat it Dave hates fish. Damn!

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