In Japanese, this dish is called tara no mizore ni, or sleet-simmered cod.
‘Sleet?’ you may be wondering, ‘as in the mushy half-melted snow that is characteristic of spring in some countries?’
This Japanese recipe calls for grated daikon, which bears a striking resemblance to wet snow. Add it to a pot of simmering broth and it becomes even more liquid – like when rain falls on a snow-covered street, but the snow hasn’t yet melted enough to slide into the gutter, so pedestrians are forced to walk in a slushy-sleety mess… Spoken from experience 😉
Well luckily in this case the sleet is contained in your bowl, not in your boots, and the sleety texture of the daikon and broth create an enjoyable contrast with the crispy fried fish. You can use any kind of fish, and it’s sometimes even made with chicken, though the delicate flavour of white fish is best-suited to absorb and harmonise with the umami-rich broth.
Simmered Cod with Grated Daikon
- 2 cod fillets
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 tbsp sake
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- flour for coating
- 200 g daikon (Simmering Liquid)
- 200 mL dashi (Simmering Liquid)
- 2 tbsp sake (Simmering Liquid)
- 2 tbsp mirin (Simmering Liquid)
- 2 tbsp soy sauce (Simmering Liquid)
- 1 tsp sugar (Simmering Liquid)
- Remove any pinbones you may find in the cod, and cut each fillet into 3-4 pieces (depending on the size of the fillet). Season with salt and sake, and set aside for 10-15 minutes.Peel the daikon, cut in half lengthwise and grate with a daikon grater. Let it sit in a strainer to drain away the liquid while you prepare the rest of the dish.
- Pat the cod pieces dry and coat with flour. Heat a pan to medium-high and add the oil.
- Put the cod pieces in the pan skin-side down, and fry til each side is golden in colour, about 2-3 minutes per side.
- Put the simmering liquid ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Mix in the grated daikon and add the cod. Return to a boil, then remove from heat. Serve with the liquid in a shallow bowl.