Black cod is one of the most decadent ingredients I’ve ever tasted, but the funny thing is, the texture of the fish stands out in my mind a lot more than the actual flavor. This white-fleshed fish (not to be confused with common Atlantic cod, which is what you use for fish and chips) is mild in taste, but the tender fattiness of the meat is something else.
There’s a good chance the way you’ve seen black cod prepared is with a miso glaze. In fact, it can be hard to find alternative ways of preparing the fish. But it’s versatile: Here, I marinated it briefly in a mixture of olive oil, soy sauce, and lime juice before gently roasting it. Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind when preparing this dish is the cooking time on the black cod—to overcook it would be truly unfortunate since you’d miss out on the buttery texture. In order to cook it perfectly, you will have to open the oven door, reach inside, and check the fish by flaking apart the flesh with your fingers. If the fish does not flake easily, continue to cook it. If it flakes and the center of the flesh is fully cooked, immediately remove it from the oven.
After the cod comes out of the oven, I serve it with a doctored up vegetable broth of ginger, garlic, lime juice, Sriracha, and cilantro stems—an ingredient that’s filled with flavor yet often overlooked. They’re just as flavorful as leaves but also withstand cooking in a way that the delicate leaves cannot.
Then, minutes before the dish is served, I cut bok choy into thin ribbons and add it to the broth. It wilts slightly in the hot broth, yet maintains some crunch, offering a textural contrast to the silky fish. Because in the wintertime, when meals have a chance of leaving you feeling heavy and lethargic, a sense of lightness—without losing any warmth—is welcome.
- 1 bunch cilantro
- 1 tablespoon white miso
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- Juice of 1 1/2 limes, divided
- 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 pounds black cod, skin removed and cut into 3 inch rectangular pieces
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
- 2 teaspoons mirin
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce
- 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced ribbons of baby bok choy