Aman Dosanj’s perfectly cooked sablefish has a slightly smoky flavour offset by a Bengali-style mustard and yogurt sauce.
4 fillets Ocean Wise B.C. sablefish
(black cod), about 4 oz each
2 tbsp + 1 tsp black mustard seeds
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp canola or camelina oil,
plus extra for searing fish
1 medium red onion, finely sliced
1 tsp cumin seeds, roasted or gently
toasted in a hot pan, then ground
1 tsp red chili powder (optional)
Salt, to taste
2 roma or field tomatoes, quartered
⅔ cup water
¼ cup plain yogurt, stirred to remove lumps
First, make a Kasundi-style mustard: soak 2 tbsp mustard seeds in white wine vinegar for a few hours or overnight, then blend until smooth. Set aside.
In a heavy medium saucepan, heat oil until very hot, then add 1 tsp mustard seeds and cook until they start to pop (you want them to have a little dance party). Add red onion and sauté over medium heat for 5 to 8 minutes until transluscent.
Add Kasundi mustard and sauté for another 5 minutes. Stir in cumin seeds, chili powder and salt. Stir in tomatoes, mixing well (the acidity will deglaze the pan). Add water and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 6 to 8 minutes. Add sugar, taste and adjust seasoning as necessary. Reduce heat and gently stir in yogurt, stirring to keep it from curdling. Transfer to a blender and blitz until smooth (start off slowly and gradually increase the speed).
Season sablefish fillets with salt and pepper and set a cast iron pan over medium-high heat. Add a generous drizzle of oil and, when pan is hot, sear fish for around 3 minutes per side or until just cooked (note: 8 minutes for such a delicate fish will be too much). Serve with the sauce over Swiss chard and white/salad turnips (recipe below) or rice. Serves 4.