kiss kiss biang biang

In the very same package from the generous folk at DELLI (https://delli.market), there was second jar.

This jar of XO sauce made by the hugely talented Two Hot Asians (https://www.twohotasians.com) was actually one ingredient I’d never cooked with before.

Not surprisingly, this was a delicious and easy to use sauce, packed with umami flavour, and with one hell of a kick to it.

So, I set about making monkfish with an XO butter sauce, burnt edamame purée, panko aubergine, and a bowl of biang biang noodles with peanuts and crispy onion.


[Street Player – Nothing You Can Do, Nervous Records, 2022]

Shopping list (serves 4):

Monkfish:
Mama da Costa XO sauce x 2 tbsp
Monkfish tails (roughly 450g each, skin removed) x 2
Unsalted butter x 150g
Mirin x 5 tbsp
Salt

Edamame purée:
Frozen edamame beans x 250g
Mirin x 2 tsp
Sesame oil x 1 tbsp
Light soy sauce x 1 tbsp

Panko aubergine:
Regular size aubergine (cut into 1cm discs) x 1
Egg (whisked) x 1
Sesame oil x 150ml
Panko breadcrumbs
Salt

Noodles:
Biang biang noodles x 350g
Unsalted peanuts (lightly toasted & finely chopped) x 1 large handful
White onion (finely diced) x 1
Spring onion (finely diced) to garnish
Sesame oil
Salt


Commence by sprinkling the aubergine discs with salt flakes, leaving them to release some of their moisture in a colander. After 30 minutes or so, you can simply dry them with kitchen roll, and put to one side.

In preparation for the noodles, simply take a large frying pan, and fry off the onion in a glug of neutral oil, over a medium heat. Once browned and crispy, remove and dry on some kitchen roll. Keep for later.

For the edamame purée, pop them into a saucepan with some simmering salted water. After five minutes, you can remove and add them to the same frying pan you used for the above.

Over a high heat, for no more than five minutes, char them evenly. Add them to a blender, and blitz to a silky purée with the other ingredients. Keep warm, and set aside.


Turn your oven on to a low temp. This will just be for keeping the aubergine warm.

Again, into the same frying pan, pour in the 150ml of sesame oil. Using separate bowls, dip the discs of aubergine first into the egg, and then the breadcrumbs. Repeat, and assemble them ready to be fried.

Heat your pan up until the oil is just starting to smoke, and then turn the heat down to medium before adding the coated discs of aubergine. Shallow fry them for two minutes on each side, until golden brown, and them place in the oven to keep warm. Pour the oil out of the frying pan, but don’t wash it!


Turn your focus to the monkfish tails. The skin on the fish is slightly annoying to remove, so you could just ask your fishmonger to do that.

Use a sharp knife, with single strokes, to remove each fillet away from the spine of the tail. If any skin/membrane remains, simply remove this as well. You should now have four lovely pieces of meaty white fish. Coat them with a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of mirin.

In the same frying pan as before, you can add a tablespoon of the unsalted butter. Over a high heat, cook each fillet for three minutes on both sides, basting constantly as you do so. Remove and allow to rest.

In the meantime, deglaze the pan over a medium heat with 4 tablespoons of mirin. Add the rest of the butter, and remove your pan from the heat. Scoop the XO sauce into the pan, and mix well. Pour into a smaller saucepan, and quickly use a hand blender to slightly emulsify the sauce, over a very low heat. This should take no longer than one minute.

Cook the noodles in some well-salted boiling water, as per the packet instructions, and dress them with the other ingredients.

Serve each monkfish fillet sliced in half, drenched in the XO butter sauce, with the panko aubergine and edamame purée alongside. Portion the biang biang noodles between each lucky diner.

Enjoy!XOXO

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