Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Asian Marinated Swordfish & Jalapeño Corn Pudding

Rich and succulent Grilled Swordfish bathed in a tangy Asian-inspired Lime, Cilantro & Ginger Marinade served over a bed of poached asparagus with rich, cheesy and soufflé-like Jalapeño Corn Pudding is soul satisfyingly delicious. The fragrant combination of lime juice, lime zest, cilantro, mint, ginger, sesame oil, fish sauce, brown sugar and soy sauce are blended together in a food processor until smooth, then poured over the fresh swordfish and allowed to marinate for about half an hour. While the fish is marinating, the Jalapeño Corn Pudding can be made in one large casserole or as individual ramekins. 

Corn niblets, chopped onion, garlic and jalapeños are sautéed in a little butter until the onions become soft and translucent. Corn meal, whole milk and cream and then added, along with diced red pepper, cilantro, green onions and cheddar cheese. As the mixture cools slightly, egg yolks and whisked egg whites are added to the batter, for a light soufflé-like texture, and then poured into a buttered casserole or ramekins, and topped with a final sprinkling of cheese. Baked for 35-45 minutes until the pudding becomes rich, fluffy and golden brown, this is classic Southern comfort food at its decadent best.

A tangy Asian-inspired marinade of lime, cilantro, mint, ginger, sesame oil, 
fish sauce, brown sugar and soy sauce

The swordfish is marinated in the mixture for at least 30 minutes

The Jalapeño Corn Pudding starts by sautéeing corn, onion, garlic and chopped jalapeños

A cup of cornmeal is added along with whole milk and cream, 
and mixed together until it thickens

Chopped red pepper, scallions and cilantro are then added

The mixture is stirred together with a cup of grated cheddar

The mixture is allowed to cool slightly, at which point 4 egg yolks are mixed in, 
followed by 4 whisked egg whites, then poured into a casserole or individual ramekins
and baked until golden

Asian Marinated Swordfish & Jalapeño Corn Pudding
Serves 2

1 lb Swordfish, at least  3/4-inch thick, cut into 2 portions
1 lb asparagus, poached

1 tbsp diced red pepper, lemon zest and mint, for garnish
Juice and zest of 1 lime
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
1/4 cup mint leaves
1 tsp grated ginger
1/4 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp fish sauce
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp soy sauce

Put all of the marinade ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Place the swordfish in a glass dish and pour the marinade overtop, making sure it's well coated on all sides. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes. Preheat an outdoor grill to medium-high heat and cook the swordfish until it's just cooked though, about 15-20 minutes. Garnish with a flurry of chopped red pepper, lemon zest and fresh mint, served over a bed of poached asparagus with Jalapeño Corn Pudding.

COOK'S NOTE: The swordfish can also be prepared as bite size chunks, then marinated, grilled and served as kebabs or as an appetizer with decorative bamboo picks.

Jalapeño Corn Pudding
Serves 8 

2 tbsp butter

1 cup chopped yellow onion
3 cups fresh corn kernels

1/3 cup finely chopped, seeded, jarred jalapeño peppers

3 garlic cloves, chopped

1 cup cornmeal
1 1/2 cups whole milk

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

1 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped green onions

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

4 large eggs, separated

1 3/4 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese or monterey jack

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 2-quart shallow baking dish or 6-8 ramekins. Melt butter in a skillet over medium-high heat, and sauté the onion, corn, jalapeño and garlic until onion is soft and translucent, about 6-7 minutes. Stir in the cornmeal. Add milk and cream, and stir over medium heat until a thick batter forms, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Stir in red peppers, green onions, cilantro, 1 cup of cheese, 1 tsp salt, and black pepper; cool 15 minutes. Meanwhile whip the egg whites in a separate bowl with a tiny pinch of salt until they form soft peaks. Mix the egg yolks into the cooled-down pudding batter, then gently fold the egg whites into the batter. Pour the batter into the buttered baking dish, or ramekins, and sprinkle with the remaining 3/4 cups of cheese. Bake the pudding until the top is golden and the centre is just set, about 35-45 minutes for a large casserole, and 25-30 minutes for ramekins. Serve immediately with the Cajun Swordfish.