Poaching doesn't have to yield drab and pale fish. By harnessing water and fire together you can achieve the aromatic splendor and bright acidity through the infusion of the poaching liquid and then bring in a crisp caramelization and savory sweetness with the broiling glaze. It's easy, fast and versatile. Make a deeply flavored, beautifully plated piece of fish a'poachable!
- 1-2 pounds of your favorite wild Alaskan fish (sablefish, Pacific cod, salmon)
- Poaching Liquid:
- 1 cup cold water
- 1 cup low sodium broth (chicken, veggie, or fish)
- ½ cup white wine
- ¼ medium onion
- ½ tablespoon peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 slices lemon
- 1 large bay leaf
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- Mustard Brown Sugar Glaze:
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 2 tablespoons white wine
Remove any pin bones and separate thin sections of the fish from the thicker sections so you can remove the thinner pieces from the liquid earlier and thus control the cooking more effectively.
You can choose to leave skin on or remove it. If you do leave the skin on, make a few shallow scores with a sharp knife across the skin to prevent the fish from curling when it begins to heat in poaching liquid.
Salt liberally with coarse kosher salt and let it dissolve for 20-25 minutes on the counter while preparing the poaching liquid and glaze.
While the fish is resting, add the poaching liquid ingredients into a 3-4 quart pot and stir for 1-2 minutes, until sugar dissolves. DO NOT place on heat until fish is added. Set aside.
For the glaze, add all ingredients into a small saucepan and heat on low while whisking. Continue to whisk while reducing the glaze and thickening to your desired consistency. Remove from heat and set aside.
Submerge the fish into the poaching liquid and attach a thermometer to the side of the pot or have it near the stove to monitor the liquids heating process.
Place the pot over medium heat and let the liquid heat up to around 150 degrees F. Do not stir the fish. This should take about 8-10 minutes. Once it has reached the 150-160 degrees F hold here for about 5 minutes or when lightly pressed the edges of the fish should flake. This may vary up to 3-4 minutes depending on thickness. Note: it is better to err on the side of under-cooked in this stage because the fish will be finished under the broiler. The goal is to poach fish to about three-quarters-cooked to infuse it with aromatics and contain the moisture.
Broil Fish + Serve
Place oven rack in the top position under the broiler. Turn on broiler to high and let it heat up for 1-2 minutes.
Place poached fish on a baking sheet. Using a pastry brush, coat the fish with the desired amount of glaze. Broil fish until the glaze is caramelized and turns light brown, about 3-6 minutes depending on your broiler and the thickness of your fish. Let fish rest for a few minutes and share with the people you love. Or eat it in the closet so your kids can't ask you for seconds.
Wild at Home
- with Richie Mann -
Harness the power of water (poach) and fire (broil) with this week's episode focused on poaching fish with a caramelized twist. This week, Wild at Home™ is kicking off it's first video in a mini-series of fish preparation and cooking techniques. Try these techniques on any of our wild Alaskan fish.