Expanding horizons…

by Sunita on June 18, 2008

Kay, who’s guest hosting this month’s ‘Think spice…‘ thought I was crazy enough to let her do the honours. But, after seeing her choice of spice, I was sure I did the right thing. For isn’t a little challenge, a little craziness, is what we all need now and then ? Familiarising and adopting ingredients we had no idea how to use before…making us push ourselves that extra mile to explore and expand our horizons, rather than to grow roots in our comfort zone.

If you are still wondering as to my former babbling, let me put you out of your misery. Kay has chosen Wasabi as the chosen spice for this month’s Think spice…now hasn’t that make you search for your thinking caps already :-)

A little introduction to this spice…

Wasabi is a member of the Brassicaceae family, which includes cabbages, horseradish and mustard. Known as “Japanese horseradish”, its root is used as a spice and has an extremely strong flavor. Its hotness is more akin to that of a hot mustard than the capsaicin in a chilli pepper, producing vapors that irritate the nasal passages, more than the tongue. The plant grows naturally along stream beds in mountain river valleys in Japan.

Wasabi is generally sold either in the form of a root , which must be very finely grated before use, or as a ready-to-use paste, usually in tubes approximately the size and shape of travel toothpaste tubes. Once the paste is prepared it should remain covered until served to protect the flavor from evaporation.(source)

I could not get hold of the fresh one and made do with the tube version, which I managed to get hold of, at our local Indian grocers.

I have never attempted to make anything with it before, so decided to make something simple to see how it works out. I made a simple marinade for some cod fillets and baked them.

I was quite pleased with the results, though I feel that I could have added some more wasabi (probably, double the amount) , which I avoided, for fear, of it being too overpowering.

Nevertheless, we did enjoy our dinner yesterday and so am noting down the recipe -

What’s needed-

3 cod fillets, cut into medium sized pieces
1 tsp wasabi paste
2 tsp soy sauce
3 tblsp breadcrumbs
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
2 eggs
a handful of sesame seeds for sprinkling

How to-

  1. Whisk together the wasabi, soy sauce, 2 tblsp of breadcrumbs,olive oil and eggs.
  2. Rub the marinade all over the fish pieces, cover the bowl, and leave to marinate for about half an hour.
  3. Pre heat the oven at 220 deg C and line and grease a baking tray.
  4. Arrange the fish on the tray, in a single layer. Sprinkle the rest of the breadcrumbs and the sesame seeds, and bake in the centre of the pre heated oven for approximately 25-30 minutes, or till the fish is cooked and nicely browned.
  5. Serve hot on it’s own or with a dipping sauce or as part of a meal.

We had the fish with some steamed garden peas, roast potatoes and a fresh salad. Not a bad try with a new spice, I must say. It is a very pungent spice, so I think it is better to use little quantities of the spice to check your tolerance.

There, another new spice explored…now off it goes to Kay as my entry for Think spice…think wasabi. And, if you have not already thought of it, there is still time…ends on the 25th of this month.

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Happy cook June 18, 2008 at 11:33 am

WOw you made something with wasabi. I have a unopened tube somewhere in my shelf, i too have never used it.
Will have to look around for a recipe.
This cod dish looks so good.
And here i was thinking one used wasabi just for sushi and i don’t like sushi. Well to be honest i have never tried them as it is raw fish.

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2 Asha June 18, 2008 at 11:47 am

I have got a simple one for her too. It is hard to think of dishes with Wasabi, unless you love Japanese food!:))
Cod looks yum, Wasabi gives it a good kick!:D

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3 Meena June 18, 2008 at 11:48 am

I first tried wasabi with a vegetarian sushi platter, and wasn’t too enamoured by its pungency. The fish looks scrumptions and I’m tempted to give wasabi one more chance. Thanks for the recipe Sunita!

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4 Roopa June 18, 2008 at 3:01 pm

Wow wasabi makes me think about Sushi:) I love Sushi, the first time I had wasabi was in a sushi restaurant, me being a spice lover, liked it, but no I could not have it as much as I wanted as i wanted to have other food in the restaurant without having too much water fill my stomach:)

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5 JZ @ Tasty treats June 18, 2008 at 3:10 pm

I am not a big fish fan, but sunita, u r impossible, u r making me drool…..OMG!! cant stop now, gotta go! ;-) beautiful pics as usual suni! but i wonder i will be able to do something with wasabi for think spice this time! :-(

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6 Shilpa June 18, 2008 at 3:21 pm

Looks Yummm…I have never tried wasabi

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7 Sukanya Ramkumar June 18, 2008 at 4:11 pm

WOW… that was a scrumptious recipe. Looks great. Excellent pictures. Love wasabi in fish.

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8 Rachel June 19, 2008 at 1:30 am

This is decadent!!!

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9 notyet100 June 19, 2008 at 1:32 am

looks so delicious….

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10 Andhra Flavors June 19, 2008 at 1:45 am

Looks great. Excellent pictures too..

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11 Cham June 19, 2008 at 3:37 am

Love fish, got to try wasabi in fish :) I am still wondering with a tube for a recipe :)

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12 Rachel June 19, 2008 at 12:19 pm

Wasabi in Sushi was always err….to me….

I have it not as a paste form but in a powder form..

Just love the blast of immediate taste

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13 Cynthia June 20, 2008 at 2:38 am

Sunita, I do love the summer-sunny look of the header. You are a true artist with a great eye for beauty and detail.

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14 sunita June 20, 2008 at 1:11 pm

happy cook,
Yes, I made it…give it a try :-)

asha,
thanks…looking forward to your dish :-)

Meena,
thanks…hope you do give it another chance :-)

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15 sunita June 20, 2008 at 1:13 pm

roopa,
Thanks :-D D

jz,
Thanks…and no problem..join in when you can :-)

shilpa,
Thanks…my first time too :-)

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16 sunita June 20, 2008 at 1:14 pm

sukanya,
Thanks…we did like it :-)

rachel,
thanks :-)

notyet100,
thanks :-)

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17 sunita June 20, 2008 at 1:19 pm

andhraflavors,
Thanks :-)

cham,
thanks…look around, you’ll find something that catches your fancy :-)

rachel,
thanks for thinking of me :-)

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18 sunita June 20, 2008 at 1:20 pm

cynthia,
Thanks…haven’t seen you here for such a long time…hope your work is progressing well :-)

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19 Dragonlife June 21, 2008 at 6:59 am

Greetings from Shizuoka, Japan!
It was a pleasure to find another lover of wasabi!
Her in Shizuoka Prefecture, and Shizuoka City for that matter, we are the lucky ones, as Wasabi was first grown there!
Shizuoka Produces 80% of all wasabi and hasbeen grown and sold there since the 17th Century.
We can buy them fresh with stems and leaves, all edible, any time!
Great recipe!
Looking forward to visiting and commenting again!
Robert-Gilles

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20 Sig June 22, 2008 at 11:31 pm

I’ve never heard of a baked fish with wasabi seasoning… that is quite an innovative idea Sunita!

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21 sunita June 27, 2008 at 11:47 am

dragonlife,
Thankds for the insight into wasabi…glad you dropped by :-)

sig,
Thanks…we did like it :-)

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