Marinaded Hamachi Sashimi ハマチの漬け

japanese cake

Since we had a block of frozen hamachi (1.6 lb), I had to come up with some other ways (besides straight forward sashimi) of enjoying it. Marinated tuna sashimi or “zuke” 漬け is much more common than marinated hamachi but “hamachi no zuke” ハマチの漬け is a very interesting dish and the effect of marination is quite different from tuna.

Here I served hamachi zuke in a bed of baby arugula.

Marinade: This is very similar to one I use for tuna sashimi. I have made several variations of the marinade for tuna. This time, I made it a bit differently. I first put an equal amount of sake and mirin in a small sauce pan (about 3 tbs each) and let it boil so that the alcohol dissipated (no lid) and the mixture reduced to nearly half. I then added, a 1 inch square of kelp and soy sauce (2 tbs). When the mixture returned to a boil, I shut off the flame and let it cool down. Meanwhile, I dry roasted white sesame (2 tbs) in a dry frying pan until fragrant. I tipped it off into a Japanese mortar or suribachi すり鉢 and coarsely ground the sesame which I added to the marinade (leaving 1-2 tbs aside for garnish). I placed the marinade in the refrigerator to completely cool. 

I sliced the hamachi sashimi rather thinly (3-5 mm) and placed the pieces in the cold marinade for 1 hour in the refrigerator. The length of marination is up to you but I marinated the pieces for  beween 15 minutes to one hour. 

I removed the hamachi pieces and put them in a separate bowl preserving the marinade. I mixed in chopped scallion. I placed the marinated hamachi on the greens, garnished with crumbled seasoned nori (“ajitsuke nori” 味付け海苔 from a package), the roasted white sesame seeds which were previously set aside, and a dab of wasabi. I also served the marinade on the side side just in case.

Although I made the marinade a bit on the sweet side for my taste (probably too much reduction of the sake and mirin), it is mellow and nice. The texture of the hamachi became firmer and really looked like a piece of beef. The taste and texture are very nice but the effects of marination are different from those of tuna. We like this very much.

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