Simple but show-stopping, this refreshing carpaccio is the perfect appetizer for a dinner party or date night.
Sea bream, or madai in Japanese, is known for its bright red coloring which comes from its diet heavy in prawns and crabs. Due to its vivid red scales, sea bream is often served at celebrations in Japan as a symbol of good luck. Whole grilled sea bream is a popular dish at okuizome, the occasion celebrating the 100th day after a baby’s birth, as well as at wedding receptions. As an ingredient, sea bream has a mild flavor, medium-firm texture, and medium flake.
In this recipe, we cut our sea bream into thin slices and drizzle it with a delightful, citrus-forward sauce. As carpaccio is eaten raw, be sure to look for “sashimi-grade” fish at your local Japanese market. If sea bream is not available, feel free to substitute in any white fish.
The star ingredient of the sauce is yuzu, a highly fragrant citrus fruit that is described as a cross between lemon, grapefruit, and mandarin orange. We pair yuzu zest powder with sweet honey, zippy vinegar, and rich olive oil to create a well-balanced and multi-dimensional sauce that highlights the natural sweetness of the fish.
To plate, arrange the sliced sea bream on a dish, then top with the sauce. For an aesthetic garnish, top with freshly-ground pepper and another sprinkle of yuzu zest. Fresh and elevated but simple to put together, sea bream carpaccio is an excellent way to wow your guests.
- Sea bream carpaccio (thinly sliced)
- 2 tbsp vinegar
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 1/2 tbsp honey
- Dash of yuzu zest powder (to taste)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Mix the vinegar, salt, pepper, honey, yuzu powder and olive oil together and drizzle on top of plated sea bream carpaccio.
Introduction courtesy of Britney Budiman
Britney Budiman (@booritney) is a writer, minimalist, aspiring effective altruist, and runner-in-progress with a penchant for saying “yes.” Previously, she has worked in Cambodia at a traditional arts NGO, in Brazil as a social sciences researcher, and in San Francisco at a housing start-up. She currently lives in the countryside of Kagoshima, Japan, where she teaches English. Her favorite thing in the world is good conversation.