I felt really good about myself after I bought this fish. All kinds of articles told me it was healthful and sustainable and that I was doing the right thing.
It wasn't until I got this prize of a fish home and tossed it on the cutting board that I wondered how I was going to cook it. Though many articles like to talk about the health benefits of this fish, few offered recipes. After searching through my cookbooks and then online, I found that there were frighteningly few mackerel recipes out there. The ones that I did find called for smoked mackerel. What about a fresh one?
I finally found one in The Silver Spoon, which, to its credit, had a whole mackerel section (it's a truly great cookbook).
I settled on this recipe, which pairs the full-flavored fish with currants and white wine. It's really straightforward and lets the fish have most of the spotlight. And that turned out to be a great thing because the mackerel was rich and almost meaty. Tilapia has nothing on this guy.
- 1 1-1/2 pound mackerel, cleaned
- 3/4 cup currants
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, sliced
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Pour the currants into a bowl and top with warm water. Let sit for 10 minutes or so. Drain the currants, reserving 1 1/2 ounces of the liquid.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large skillet set over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion is soft, about 8 minutes. Add the wine, liquid from the currants, and sugar. Bring to a simmer and then season with salt and pepper.
Make several diagonal slashes down each side of the fish. Set it in a roasting pan. Pour the contents from the skillet on top of the fish. Place roasting pan in the oven. Cook for 10 minutes and then add the currants. Cook for another 10 minutes. Carefully remove the fillets and serve with the sauce.