I could eat a meal like this almost every night. It’s light and fresh with vegetables and flaky fish poached in a perfumed broth. Five Spice is a Chinese spice blend combining equal parts cinnamon, star anise, clove, fennel and Szechuan peppercorns and can be found in most grocery stores. A spa meal without the sacrifice, the chewy Udon noodles and bok choy soak up that brothy flavor and round out this quick meal perfectly. Who said eating well was hard work?
It’s that easy: Cutting vegetables on the diagonal is an Asian technique that exposes more cut surface to heat, helping the vegetables to cook faster. They also look prettier cut that way. Just angle your knife and slice away. You’ll get the hang of it in no time.
- Cook time:
- Prep time:
- Total time:
- 6 heads of baby bok choy
- 2 carrots
- 2 green onions
- 1 thumb-to-knuckle-size piece of ginger root, peeled
- 1/4 cup minced cilantro
- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 2 Tbsp. dry Sherry
- 2 tsp. soy sauce, plus more
- 2 tsp. sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. Five Spice powder
- 2 tsp. Asian sesame oil
- 2 tsp. sesame seeds
- Four 6 oz. Mahi Mahi filets
- Salt for sprinkling
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- 6 oz. Udon noodles
- Slice the baby bok choy, carrot and green onion thinly on the diagonal, keeping the leaves of bok choy separate from the stalks. Mince the ginger root and cilantro on a large cutting board in separate piles.
- Combine the broth, sherry, soy sauce, sugar, Five Spice and sesame oil in a small cup. Measure the sesame seeds separately.
- Pat the filets dry and sprinkle them with salt and pepper.
- Heat a 12-in frying pan with a lid over medium-high heat and add the vegetable oil. When the oil shimmers, add the baby bok choy stems, carrot and ginger root and sauté until the baby bok choy turns bright green and the ginger root is fragrant, about 2 minutes.
- Add the broth mixture and bring it to a simmer. Add the noodles and give them a stir to keep them from sticking. Once the noodles come up to a simmer, top them with the fish, baby bok choy leaves and green onion. Cover and reduce the heat to low and simmer the fish and noodles until all are tender and cooked through, about 4 minutes. Taste the broth and noodles and add more soy sauce or pepper if needed.
- Transfer the fish and noodles to 4 heated shallow bowls and pour the broth and vegetables over. Garnish with the cilantro and sesame seeds.
Extra Hungry? Serve a bigger piece of fish. About 8 oz. should do it.
In the Glass: Try a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand such as Kim Crawford or Pomelo for tropical fruit and a zesty finish.