A step-by-step photo guide to Gary Rhodes' steamed sea bass with soft spring onion mashed potato, leeks, ginger and soy vinaigrette, a favourite recipe inspired by his travels.
Gary Rhodes' recipe for steamed sea bass
Sea bass special (Serves 4)
For the confit ginger
150g caster sugar
3x3cm piece ginger, peeled
For the soy vinaigrette
50ml fish sauce
75ml soy sauce
6 tsps caster sugar
For the garnish
2 leeks, cleaned
4 spring onions
1 piece confit ginger (shop bought is fine)
For the fish
10g butter, softened
4 x 175g sea bass fillets, cleaned and skinned
4 thin slices fresh ginger
4 squares parchment paper, approximately 15x10cm
100ml extra virgin olive oil
For the spring onion mashed potato (optional)
3 spring onions, sliced
into thin rounds
400g (approx) mashed potato
a few coriander leaves
salt and black pepper
If making, prepare the confit ginger: pour the water and caster sugar into a small saucepan, place over a medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves. Add the ginger and poach gently for 3 hours or until tender. Allow the ginger to cool before slicing into thin matchsticks. To save time, you could use shop-bought candied ginger.
Pour all the ingredients for the soy vinaigrette into a small saucepan, place over a medium heat and bring to the boil. After 2-3 minutes remove the pan from the heat and leave to cool to room temperature.
Slice the leeks in half lengthways, then cut into thin strips, approximately 6cm long. Cut the spring onions into thin slices on the diagonal. Mix the leeks, spring onions and candied ginger together.
Lightly brush the squares of parchment paper with the softened butter. Put a slice of fresh ginger in the middle of each piece of paper, then place the sea bass fillet on top. Fold the paper over to enclose the fish; this helps to protect it from the heat and the butter keeps the bass moist. Place the fish on a large steamer tray, cover with a lid and place over a pan of boiling water. Steam for 5-8 minutes, until the fish is just cooked through and tender to touch. While the fish is cooking, finish the mashed potato (if using). Melt the butter in a saucepan, then add the 3 sliced spring onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly softened. Add the mashed potato and cream and stir well. Heat through and taste to check the seasoning.
Place a tray with perforated holes on top of another, deeper tray. Heat the olive oil in a small pan. Remove the fish from the steamer, discard the parchment paper and ginger and place the fillets on the prepared tray. Arrange a handful of the leek, spring onion and ginger garnish on top of each piece of fish. Carefully pour the hot oil over the top; you should hear a sizzling as you do so.
Remove the perforated tray with the fish on it. Whisk the oil that has gathered in the deeper tray into the pan containing the soy vinaigrette.
Place a spoonful of mash in the middle of each serving bowl. Arrange the sea bass fillets (topped with the leek garnish) in the centre and drizzle the soy vinaigrette around the edge. Finish with a few coriander leaves.