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Alaska Sablefish (Black Cod) with Ginger-Lime Sauce

his weeks' ravishing Southeast Asian recipe comes to us from Chef Mai Pham, the chef/owner of Lemon Grass Restaurant and Lemon Grass Asian Grill & Noodle Bar in Sacramento, California, who is a regular columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle.

Nationally recognized as an authority on Southeast Asian cuisine, she's also dedicated to sustainability and wellness, as witnessed by her speaking role at the Flavor, Wellness and Sustainability Chef Culinary Conference at the University of Massachusetts this past June.

Chef Pham is the author of The Best of Vietnamese and Thai Cooking
which features many of the restaurant's recipesand Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table, which was a James Beard Award nominee and named one of the best cookbooks in 2001 by The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times.

Alaska Sablefish (Black Cod) with Ginger-Lime Sauce

Serves 4


4 (4 oz each) Alaska Sablefish skin-on fillets
1/2 cucumber, unpeeled
1/4 cup organic extra virgin olive or macadamia nut oil
6 small cloves garlic, uncut
1 cup Ginger-Lime Dipping Sauce (see recipe)

Ginger-Lime Dipping Sauce
makes about 1 cup

1 teaspoon garlic, chopped
3 Thai bird chilies or 1 Serrano chili, chopped
3 tablespoons sugar (optional)
3 tablespoons ginger, minced
1/4 cup fish sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
3 tablespoons water

  • Place the garlic, chilies, sugar and ginger in a mortar and pound into a paste. Transfer to a small mixing bowl and add the fish sauce, lime juice and water. Set aside 15 minutes before serving.

  • Seed cucumber and cut into long, thin strips about the thickness of angel hair pasta. Add cucumber slices to Ginger-Lime Dipping Sauce and set aside.

  • Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Cook fillets until golden and just done, 2 to 3 minutes depending on the thickness. Halfway into the cooking, add whole garlic cloves and cook until soft. Remove fillets and garlic and drain on paper towels.

  • Arrange fillet on serving plate. Scatter cooked garlic cloves on top. Remove cucumbers from Dipping Sauce and neatly place on fillet. Drizzle some sauce over top and serve the remainder on the side.

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