Ok. Lets open the Bible and look back on every single dish i ever made in my life. They are all have to be ‘my creations’ or ‘ my interpretations’. I ve got to pick the very best ones – and i need to push even the best ones to be more perfect then the ‘best’. Hard work belive me. Recreate a dish, what was perfect already (would never gone to the menu otherwise) taste and try to find a weak point.
This might sounds a bit hilarious: but its like grab your child and trying to look for an imperfection. A bigger nose, not simmetric eyes, unhealthy hair… anything. U should not really do this with your kid. Well, kitchen, your dish… u can change any part of that dish and this is how developement works. Still its painful to anatomize something u already created with perfection. Anyway. Let me give u and example.
If u do follow me – u must remember my ‘smoking‘ post when i was making smoked butterbean and chickpea hummus for an onion dish (and i was crazily using for chocolate protein bar as well hehehe). So that dish is still on the menu ever since – its one of my very best. Just as tasty as f’ckin pretty.
Seared and roasted roscoff onions, smoked hummus, miso caramel covered crunchy pumpkin seeds, creme frache spheres and crispy sage leaves. The dish born like this – being absolut vegetarian and by skipping the creme frache easily made to be a gorgeous vegan dish. Is there any way it can be better? Adding, changing or taking someting away? It needs to serve its purpose – in the restaurant it was (still is) the best vegetarian dish ever. Now im stepping up – so after lots of hours of brainstorming and trying and tasting i end up using my roscoff onion dish as ‘the garnish’ of a beautiful piece of lamb. Not for anything else – but because its just gonna be completed with this animal protein. With all my respect of course.
Today i FINALLY FINISHED another dish – fish&miso&cheese. Almost a week now im working on it each every day – today finally i reached the stage when im happy what i ve got, im happy to write it down and i dont feel i have to try again tomorrow. Which means i can move on to another creations what exists only in words and in my brain. It was a long way – let me show u.
Originally this was a very much japanese influenced dish – swimming in miso. Because my favourite market snack in Japan was the miso fermented daikon – i really wanted to recreate it. Let me copy my receipe book page here:
“COD, DAIKON, MISO HOLLANDAISE, SAKE PICKLED SEAWEED”
- panfried cod
- miso fermented daikon – sous vide
- miso hollandaise in gun
- sake pickled wakame
- sesame seed
So this was the very first version in my head. Then started to try. And try again. And again. And look into flavour pairings…
“MISO HALIBUT, EMENTALI, PRESERVED LEMON, GALUSKA”
This version was yesterday. After lots of trials cheese came across my mind (appearantly miso works amazing with sweet cheeses) and was asking the guys in the kitchen – would they mind a cheesy fish at all??? So lets try – lets see. I even made hungarian galuska which is like little gnocchis really with preserve lemon inside. Wasnt baaaad but – i found the whole dish faaaaar to fatty and heavy for a fish dish. Flavours were working very well, but not 100% happy. Another day gone and i wasnt happy. Plus i was really keen on put that freakin fermented daikon in the dish cause i am just in love with that so much! Last attempt today – if i cant have it right than i forget about it. Pinky promise. And it happened.
“POACHED SOLE, COMTE, DAIKON, KELP”
Originally i wanted a nice white meaty fish like MONKFISH – after it became COD, later it turned to HALIBUT or TURBOT … and today i realised it doesnt really matter. It has to be white fish with some fishy characteristics (not to let the cheese overpower) but thats all. And somehow came the idea of rolling some fillets of flatfish up like house of a snail … and here we go. I rolled it up and it was calling for poaching. Fillets were looking very sexy to be fair. After… i got some real good spicy daikon – u know the peppery one which makes u coughing after 5 seconds LOL. I was peeling this daikon and my fermented ones to make the garnish on the bottom of the fish like a little salad. I found wakame far to soft for my dish, i wanted a seaweed which has a crunch so i mirin-pickled some kelp (original idea was sake pickling but sake is so expensive and i rather drink it anyway so i skipped this little detail hahaha) to support the ‘taste of sea’. Made also a freakin gorgeous miso – katsuboshi crumb for texture and last but not least… a supercool comte cheese sauce.
OMG. Beautiful. Thats it. I was very happy. We were all very happy finally with this dish. Lets move on.