AT A GLANCE
"Brining is a good way to make the texture and flavour of raw seafood a little more pleasant," says Ben Devlin. "It can firm up the flesh, soften the sinew a little and season it nicely. This works with a wide variety of fish and shellfish, but for this recipe I'd recommend Spanish mackerel, amberjack, albacore or kingfish. If you have the opportunity, blending the macadamia for the milk a day ahead will give a better flavour, but this method on the day also gives a great result. I also like to roast the nuts for the nut milk on a wood barbecue for extra flavour, but roasting them in the oven does a good job too."
|01||Preheat oven to 200C. Stir salt and 500ml iced water in a bowl until salt dissolves, then place fish in a container large enough to fit snugly, pour brine over and refrigerate for 20 minutes.|
|02||Spread macadamias on an oven tray and roast until browned and toasted (3-4 minutes), transfer to a blender while still hot, add 1½ tsp macadamia oil and 80ml water and blend until smooth. Place in a piece of muslin or a clean tea towel then squeeze to extract as much milk as possible (discard solids) and refrigerate until required.|
|03||Pound lemon myrtle leaves, pepper berries and lemon juice with a mortar and pestle, until aromatic, then add remaining macadamia oil and pound to combine. Strain dressing through a fine sieve and season to taste.|
|04||Drain fish from brine, pat dry with paper towels, slice thinly across the grain and arrange the slices on a serving plate. Pour macadamia milk into spaces between fish, spoon native pepper dressing over fish, scatter with chopped macadamias, leaves and flowers, and serve.|
Note Lemon myrtle plants are available from native plant nurseries. Native pepperberry is available from Herbie's Spices (herbies.com.au); if it's unavailable substitute black peppercorns. Lemon balm is available from Flower Power (flowerpower.com.au) and select nurseries. Wood sorrel, also known as oxalis, is not available commercially; substitute baby sorrel leaves.