Mackerel escabeche

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 8 people

  • 125 gm (½ cup) fine sea salt
  • 2 kg mackerel fillets (about 8 fillets)
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil
  • 2 small dried red chillies
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 310 ml (1¼ cups) white wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp marjoram
  • 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
01   Bring salt and 450ml water to the boil in a saucepan over high heat, stirring to dissolve salt, then cool to room temperature. Place mackerel in a non-reactive container, pour brine over, cover and refrigerate until chilled (30 minutes).
02   Drain mackerel (discard brine) and pat dry with absorbent paper. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, add chilli, garlic and bay leaf, then cook mackerel in batches, turning once, until browned (2-3 minutes each side). Transfer to a non-reactive container and set aside to cool to room temperature.
03   Add onion to pan, stir occasionally until tender (7-8 minutes), add vinegar and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, cool to room temperature, then stir in marjoram, peppercorns and cumin seeds.
04   Pour vinegar mixture over mackerel, cover and refrigerate to pickle (2 days). Mackerel escabeche will keep refrigerated for 2 weeks.
This recipe is from the May 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

Recipe:

RODNEY DUNN

Photography:

WILLIAM MEPPEM

Styling:

EMMA KNOWLES

Drinking Suggestion:

GRAPY, OFF-DRY RIESLING. , suggested by MAX ALLEN

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