STRIPED BASS WITH CASHEW SOY SAUCE
The Brazilian Kitchen
by Leticia Moreinos Schwartz
Peixe com Molho de Manteiga e Castanhas
Inspired by both Asian and Brazilian cuisines, this recipe is perfect for a weeknight dinner. Soy sauce makes a fine sauce here, thinned with nutty browned butter, lemon juice, shallot, and a dash of sugar. But that's just the beginning. You add peanuts, cashews, and chives before serving. Ultimately, you'll be rewarded with a mahogany-colored, intensely flavored, and crunchy sauce. Feel free to use this sauce with other fish as well, such as halibut, monk- fish, salmon, and scallops. Just be sure to adapt the cooking time for each fish.
Makes 4 Servings
• 14 tablespoons unsalted butter (1¾ sticks)
• 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 1 shallot, finely minced
• 1/8 teaspoon sugar
• four 5-ounce striped bass fillets, skin-on
• kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1/3 cup cashews, roasted and coarsely chopped
• 1/3 cup peanuts, roasted and coarsely chopped
• 2 tablespoons fresh chopped chives
1. In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt 12 tablespoons of butter until it develops a light golden brown color. Be careful not to let it burn. Add the lemon juice, soy sauce, shallot, and sugar. Whisk the sauce, then remove the pan from the heat, but keep it in a warm spot on the stove.
2. Make two or three small diagonal cuts on the skin of the fish without piercing the flesh. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.
3. In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and add the fish skin side down. Depending on the thickness of the fish, it might curve so use a flat metal spatula to press the skin down against the skillet, making sure it becomes crispy. Cook until the fish turns opaque, about 2 minutes on each side.
4. Reheat the sauce gently over low heat and whisk vigorously to blend it smooth. Add the cashews, peanuts, and chives.
5. To serve, arrange the fish on 4 warm plates and spoon the sauce on top.