Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Lunch Week 11: Roasted Cod with Miso Eggplant, Soy Glazed Mushrooms, and Cooked Lettuce with Oyster Sauce

So every Sunday, I head over to the kitchen to whip up a big batch of food for lunch the next week. Yes, I brown bag. And I almost always do it every week unless I become too busy to even buy cold cuts from the deli. I do it for several reasons being health, finance, and laziness. Now, you may think that spending hours on a day off to prep and cook five meals at once is hardly lazy. But let me remind you, I hate it when the time comes to decide what to eat for lunch every day. I work in Midtown so the choices are endless. My problem, the more choices, the harder it is for me. So it's much easier for me to have my lunch ready and already decided.

So my lunch for the week: Roasted Cod with Miso Eggplant, Soy Glazed Mushrooms, and Cooked Lettuce with Oyster Sauce
Back to Asian flavors this week. No specific kind. Just Asian in general. A relatively healthy lunch with cooked fish and vegetables. The salt level is probably a bit high. But I grew up on soy sauce so it's in my blood already.
First up, the roasted eggplant. I used the Asian eggplant which is more long and slender. It tends to also be sweeter.
I sliced them in half lengthwise then cut cross hatches into the meat. Then I brushed on a miso paste mixed with soy sauce and oil. A generous amount on each piece. Salt and pepper to season it. Light handed on the salt though.
I roasted it in the oven at 375oF for 30 minutes until browned on top and soft inside.
Next, the mushrooms. I used king mushrooms but any meaty mushroom would work. Oyster  mushrooms would probably be excellent.
I cut the larger mushrooms into medallions and marinated it with leftover galbi sauce (Korean short rib marinade).
Then into the oven at 400oF for 30 minutes until the mushrooms have shrunk and the marinade has reduced.
And now the fish. I used cod here but any white fish would probably work. I brushed on a marinade of soy sauce and yuzu. A couple of good brushes right on top.
Then into the oven at 400oF for 8-10 minutes. I slightly overcooked my fish as you can see some of the pieces started to break off.
And lastly, the sauteed lettuce. I recently tweeted that I feel like I'm the only one who grew up in a family that cooked their lettuce. Traditional Chinese households do not eat salad. They eat cooked vegetables and lettuce was no different. We'd often use it in soupy noodles to balance out the carbs and meat. But here, I sauteed iceberg lettuce with oil (no salt) until wilted then tossed it with oyster sauce. It was an easy vegetable side dish at home when we didn't have time to go to the Asian market. The regular supermarket was just around the corner. The taste of the lettuce is neither enhanced nor lost. It really doesn't have much of a taste on its own. It's really for the contrast in texture.
The lunch as a whole this week was just meh. It wasn't very exciting nor was it bad. Well, the fish was overcooked so that's bad in my book. But still edible. The mushroom had the most flavor by far. I'm pretty sure I won't be making this lunch again. If I'm going to eat the same thing 5 times in 1 week, I might as well make it exciting, no?

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