Japanese Cuisine: Fish Recipes

Karei no Nitsuke/Simmered Turbot!


Karei/Turbot or halibut is a cheap and very popular fish in Japan, especially cooked, steamed, simmered or deep-fried.
Here is a very easy recipe found in many homes and izakayas:

Karei no Nitsuke/Simmered Turbot!

INGREDIENTS: For 3 “slices”

-Turbot/Halibut: 3 large cuts
-Soy sauce: 130 ml
-Sugar: 2 tablepsoons
-Mirin/sweet sake: 4 tablespoons
-Japanese sake: 4 tablespoons
-Miso paste: 1 tablespoon
-Garlic, grated: half a tablespoon
-Ginger, grated: Half a tablespoon



-In a large pan drop soy sauce, miso paste, sugar, mirin and sake, and bring slowly to boil.


-Add fish and bring slowly to boil.


-Add grated garlic and ginger and cook on a low-medium fire until fish is almost cooked.


-Cover the fish with foil paper and simmer for 5 more minutes. Take care not burn anything.


-Discard foil paper and keep spooning the juices over the fish util it has reached a nice brown colour and reduced to a nice texture.


-Serve at once with some lettuce or greens. The fish and the sauce should have a shiny aspect.

The juices might look a bit dark, but that is when it’s at its best. Cooking time is difficult to determine exactly, but make sure nothing “burns”.
Great with plain steamed rice.
Mebaru no Nitsuke/Stewed Rockfish


I found a bunch of simple fish recipes in my notes and thought that the faster I published them the better.
So after yesterday’s Simmered Turbot, here is a similar recipe for “mebaru” or Rockfish. a very popular fish here in Shizuoka and elsewhere!
Have a look at the pic of the fish at the end of this posting!


-Mebaru/Rockfish: 1 whole
-Water: 75 ml
-Soy sauce, Japanese Sake, Mirin/Sweet sake: 1 tablespoon each
-Sugar: 1 teaspoon
-Ginger, grated: 1 teaspoon


-Dress the fish (take out the gills and innards.

-Wash the fish in running clear cold water. Dry it off with a piece of kitchen paper.
In a large pan, drop water, soy sauce, sake, mirin, and sugar. Mix well. Heat just before boiling point. Lay the fish inside.

-Bring the fire down to low-medium. Keep spooning “juices/soup” over the fish as it cooks.

-Cook until soup is reduced to one third.

-Check the taste of the soup halfway. If too astringent add sugar or mirin.

-The juices/soup having reached a slightly sirupy state, add the grated ginger. It is better to add it at the last minute, otherwise the taste will disappear.

-Consider the size of the fish as regards the ingredients for the soup/stock. It will be ok to double the ingredients quantity anyway.

Youmay increase the quantity of ginger and sugar. If the fish does not seem to be absolutely fresh increase the amount of sake and decrease accordingly the amount of water.

Karei no karaage/Whole deep-fried Flounder


Here continues the mini-series on easy Japanese fish recipes:

Karei no Karaage/Whole deep-fried Flounder!
Have a look at the flounder pic below!


-Flounders: 1 per person
-salt: to taste
-Black pepper: To taste



-Take scales off the fish. Take out innards. Clean the fish under running cold clear water. Dry off with kitchen paper.


-make a incision under the gills and take these out cleanly. Sprinkle with salt and let rest for 10 minutes.


-Wipe water and salt off the fish. Make a cross section cut along the skin as in picture. Season with salt and pepper and leave inside fridge for a while to let the fish suck in the seasoning.


-Sprinkle both sides of the fish with cornstarch (enough to cover the fish as “thinly” as possible)


-Heat the oil to 160~170 degrees Celsius. Drop the fish in the oil.


-When the fish has attained a nice colour and that the tail and fins have become crispy, finish the cooking by raising the temperature of the oil for a little while.


-Take off excess oil on a piece of kitchen paper.
Apart of the bones around the eyes, not only the flesh, but the bones, fins and tail can be eaten!


Take care not to start the deep-frying at too high a temperature, otherwise the fish will “burn out”!


4 thoughts on “Japanese Cuisine: Fish Recipes”

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