• 4 large mackerel – filleted and bones removed
  • 1 large chunk of ginger 8 cm long – peeled and sliced julienne
  • 200ml sake
  • 3 tbs miso – red (awase) preferably
  • 3 tbs palm sugar
  • 60ml mirin
  • 60ml dark soy sauce
  • Large bunch/pack of watercress


  • STEP 1
    Cut the mackerel fillets into 3 or 4 pieces.
  • STEP 2
    Put the sake, mirin, miso, sugar, and soy into a sauce pan and bring to the boil – add the ginger and return to the boil.
  • STEP 3
    Place the mackerel in a single layer in the sauce pan and bring back to a simmer and cook on low heat for 5-10 minutes.
  • STEP 4
    Strain the fish from the pan - in this instance the liquid in the pan should be considered the braising broth, its purpose was to make the fish taste wonderful and is now largely redundant. However, a couple spoonfuls over the fish, watercress and rice or noodles will provide a good sauce and the seasoning. Taste the sauce, but be aware that our palates are not always used to the sweet and salty intensity of Japanese sauces. It is likely to taste quite strong so further reduction will increase this effect. Make a judgement; reduce, leave as it is, dilute with chicken stock, white wine or water.
  • STEP 5
    Serve the fish on a plate with watercress. I served this with Japanese brown sushi rice with peas, courgette and chives. A really excellent meal all round.

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