Japanese! Having decided that that would be the flavour of the month, I set out to make a dish as Japanese-y as possible, while adding a bit of my own personality and preference for French cooking and techniques into the mix. And so we have… squid ink kingfish with dashi oil, puffed rice and ramen gnocchi.
I decided to make dashi oil as opposed to a dashi stock with water simply because I wanted that rich, oily mouthfeel, inspired by the time I made this dish. I guess it’s something that is not especially common in Australia and seem a bit gross, but embrace your inner Mediterranean, or Sichuan, and load up the oil!
200mls grapeseed oil
2 tbsp kombu
2 tbsp dried bonito flakes
2 rashers of bacon, diced
Gently sauté the bacon for 5 minutes or so, then drop the heat to low, add the kombu and the and take off the heat. Add the kombu and the bonito and leave to infuse on a low heat for half an hour or so. Strain the oil and set aside.
Boil long grain rice in salted water, then drain. When completely dry (you may need to dry it in the oven to speed it up), fry the grains of rice in hot oil.
3 sachets of squid ink (available from the fish markets and essential ingredient)
Marinate the kingfish in squid ink for half an hour or so, then vacuum seal the kingfish and the ink and cook at 47 degrees for 10 minutes.
Ok, so I actually got this recipe from watching an episode of David Chang’s TV series The Mind of a Chef, where David Chang, in his infinite genius, reveals the process for turning packet ramen into gnocchi. I understand the recipe is also in the first issue of Lucky Peach. Or you can find it here. It’s a pretty straightforward recipe, and if you follow the steps carefully you should be fine. Honestly, who turns ramen into gnocchi? Brilliant.