Arctic Char Vojvodina

Marina Polvay really has a fertile imagination. The woman who (kind of) brought us the Veal Dubrovnik strikes again with the Fish Vojvodina. The recipe supposedly originates from the northernmost province of Serbia and consists of freshwater fish, such as pike or perch, layered with mushrooms and cream, then baked. Needless to say, nobody seems to have heard of it, and we’re here to change this. Next time you go to Belgrade, or just to Chow.com, don’t forget to spread the word!

I wanted to keep the idea of layers but make the dish more interesting, and rye bread tastes delicious with the fish. Arctic char is closely related to trout, a much more likely inhabitant of the Vojvodina rivers. For the mushrooms, I use a delicate blend of trumpet royales and various clamshells sold at D’Artagnan and Whole Foods. Hard cider and melted aged gouda bring a pleasantly fruity note.

This is a rather quick recipe. Except for the apple terrine that should be prepared ahead of time, everything can done while the fish is cooking — if you’re a little bit organized.

Green apple terrine
Yields 4 servings

10 oz peeled and cored Granny Smith apples
1 oz butter
1/4 tsp chives, coarsely chopped
2 oz hard cider
3.2 g powdered gelatin

  • Slice 3/5 of the apples. Heat the butter in pan until it turns brown (not black!), add the apples and cook over medium heat until soft, stirring regularly. Add the chives and hard cider, bring to a boil and remove from heat. Let cool for 5 minutes.
  • Transfer the cooked mixture to a blender, add the gelatin, then process until smooth and transfer to a bowl. Chop the remaining apples into a brunoise and mix into the purée. Pour into a 2″ x 4″ container (or something about that size) lined with plastic wrap, cover with more plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.

Cider mushrooms
Yields 4 servings

6 oz mushrooms (trumpet royales and clamshells)
salt
black pepper, ground
1 1/2 oz butter
3 oz hard cider
1 1/2 oz heavy cream

  • Quarter the trumpet royales lengthwise, and trim the stems of the clamshells. Season with salt and pepper, and sauté in a hot saucepan with butter over medium heat until golden brown. Add the hard cider, and simmer until reduced by 1/2. Add the heavy cream, and cook until the sauce is very thick and coats the mushrooms. Reserve.

Arctic char sous-vide
Yields 4 servings

12 oz cleaned arctic char (about 18 oz with skin), cut into 4 portions
salt
black pepper, ground
1 oz butter, sliced

  • Season the fish with salt and pepper, cover both sides with the butter, and place in a sous-vide pouch. Cook in a 113 F water bath for 20 minutes, then start assembling the dish immediately.

Assembly
Yields 4 servings

4 slices rye bread
1/2 oz butter
arctic char sous-vide
cider mushrooms
3/4 oz aged gouda, finely grated
1 tbsp chives, finely sliced
green apple terrine, cut into 1″ cubes

  • Trim the bread slices to match the size of the fish portions. Toast in a pan with the butter over medium heat.
  • Reheat the mushrooms in a saucepan. Take the fish out of the sous-vide pouch. Place the arctic char portions on top of the toasts, then cover with mushrooms. Sprinkle the gouda, and melt using a blow torch — keep the flame at a reasonable distance, or the cheese will burn. Sprinkle with chives, and serve with the green apple terrine immediately.
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One thought on “Arctic Char Vojvodina

  1. Pingback: Crimean Seafood Orzo « Food Perestroika

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