Steamed Sake Halibut with Bok Choy
3/4 cup mirin or sake*
3/4 bottled clam juice
1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, peeled and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 (4-oz. each) halibut fillets
Chili paste (optional)
3 scallions, very finely sliced
4 tsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
1/2 lb. baby bok choy, separated into leaves
2 tsp. sesame seeds
In skillet large enough to hold steamer, combine the mirin, clam juice, ginger and garlic. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and gently simmer 5 minutes. Meanwhile, sprinkle the fish with pepper to taste. If you like a little spice, rub the fillets with chili paste.
Place a rack or steaming device in the skillet. (If you don't have a rack to fit in a skillet, crumple pieces of aluminum foil, twist them and lay across the skillet like the bars of a rack to hold the fish above the liquid.)
Place the fish on the steamer rack. Sprinkle onions over fish and spoon soy sauce and sesame oil over that. Cover the skillet and steam until the fish is opaque in the center, about 5 minutes. About halfway through the cooking, place the bok choy leaves on top of the fish.
Meanwhile, heat a small skillet over medium-high heat. Add sesame seeds and heat them until they turn a golden brown, gently shaking the skillet to keep the seeds moving and avoid burning. Immediately transfer seeds to a small bowl to stop the browning process.
Remove steamer from skillet. Arrange bok choy on each of four plates and top with fillets of fish. Pour pan juices over fish and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
*Mirin is a Japanese rice cooking wine; sake is rice wine and, depending on the brand, is typically drier than mirin. Either can be used, based on either convenience or preference. If neither is available, use a mild chicken or vegetable broth. Makes 4 servings