It's weird to think that our trip to Oahu was over a month ago, before the world Pokemon Go. Tim Duncan was still on the Spurs and Snapchat was the reigning cool kid app. What a difference a month can make. But can we go back to life before Pokemon Go for a minute, because I have been dying to share one of the most magical trips to Oahu I've taken yet. You might recall, the main purpose of our trip was to watch two beautiful friends join in marriage, however, we managed to sneak in a mini vacation while we were "home." Isn't it funny how when you go "home," home being your hometown, you never really get to relax. Your days are packed with all sorts of family and friend get togethers, which are lovely and necessary and what I look forward to most when I head to Hawaii. However, sometimes I get back to Los Angeles and feel like I need a vacation after I return.
Which is why this last trip home was one for the books. We headed out to Ko'olina to check out the new Four Seasons Oahu and goodness gracious is it special. The minute you walk in, you're greeted with leis, delicious fresh fruit juices, and the true aloha spirit. And everything is just so open and bright, think ocean views all around. Everything about this resort is top notch and luxurious, from their gorgeous coffee bar and lounge, Hokulea, to their pan-Asian restaurant, La Hiki. The rooms have the best views (check out that sunset photo), and don't get me started on that infinity pool overlooking the ocean. And did I mention the service?
Anyway, I could go on and on, so let me just share this one memory from our stay. After Moses and I checked in, we were whisked away to Fish House, one of the five food and beverage venues at the resort. What we were treated to was something I'll never forget. Firstly, the restaurant was days away from opening, so we were lucky enough to get a very special first look. Secondly, we cooked our meal with Fish House's Chef Ray German. So cool! Finally, and this has got to be the coolest part, we enjoyed our meal at our own private chef's table IN the kitchen. Pretty much the coolest dining experience I've ever had. That's got to be the best seat in the house. And the food, oh man, let me tell you about the food.
Chef Ray and his team treated us to tako (octopus) tacos, divinely fresh ahi poke, a portuguese sausage stuffed whole snapper, Chef Ray's take on elote, and of course dessert (specifically a cilantro pineapple upside down cake, where they made me feel like a princess and wrote Fix Feast Flair!). To say I've been craving this meal for some time now, after the fact, is an understatement... and so, today, I'm sharing a tempura fish taco recipe from Chef Ray so you guys can experience the Fish House at Four Seasons Oahu at home. Isn't that kinda the coolest thing about cooking? I love being able to go somewhere I've never been to, or reminisce about a place, without hopping on a plane or getting in the car. And because I couldn't sit here and tell you about how amazing our meal was, without sharing it, Chef Ray was kind enough to share this recipe. All I can say is, make this. Right now! It's that good and who wouldn't want to be transported to beautiful Ko'olina on a weekday, right?
Fish House's Tempura Fish Tacos
From Chef Ray German
Serves 6 - 8
- ½ lb. of Fresh Masa (or 1. 5 cups of Tortilla Mix Maseca)
- 1 c. water
- 3 tsp. togarashi spice
- 1 Tbsp. aonori dried seaweed
- 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh ogo (if available)
- ½ fresh ear of corn, stripped
- Zest of 1 fresh lime
- 2 pinches smoked sea salt
- 1 bunch fresh cilantro
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 habanero chili
- Juice of 2 fresh limes
- 2 tomatillos, peeled
- 1 Haas avocado, peeled and pitted
- ½ Maui onion, peeled
- Salt & pepper to taste
PILSNER BATTERED FISH TEMPURA
- 2 c. sifted tempura flour
- 12 oz. Local Pilsner Beer
- 1lb of Hawaiian snapper (red, pink, etc. but if you can’t find, use Halibut or Stripped Sea Bass), cut into bite sized cubes or thin strips
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/2 c. of sour cream or crema mexicana
- Juice of 1 fresh lime
- 2 Tbsp. sriracha
- 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
- Sliced radishes
- Fresh lime wedges
- Sliced red Cabbage or green Cabbage
- Chopped sweet and green onions
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Chef's knife
- Cutting board
- Mixing bowls
- Tortilla press
- Plastic wrap/kitchen towels
- Cast iron skillet
- High speed blender
- Oil thermometer
- Dutch oven or fryer
- Chop corn kernels finely and squeeze excessive liquid out.
- In a mixer or by hand mix all ingredients making sure dough mixture is soft.
- If dough is too hard, add 1 tablespoon of additional water to find the right consistency.
- Once dough is developed, cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap to prevent from getting dried.
- Preheat a cast iron pan on high heat. Roll dough into golf ball sized balls and cover with a damp towel. In a tortilla presser lined with two piece of plastic liner, place one ball in the middle and gently press flat. Cook tortillas for 20-30 seconds on each side, making sure they’re cooked through. If more time needed place back for 10 seconds on each side.
- In a high speed blender, blend all ingredients, until the consistency is smooth. Salt and pepper to taste.
PILSNER BATTERED FISH TEMPURA
- In a large, deep dutch oven or a fryer, heat oil to 375°F. Whisk tempura flour and beer together in a medium mixing bowl until smooth, do no over mix.
- Salt and pepper snapper (or other white fish), then dredge in batter, making sure it’s evenly coated.
- Drop in fryer or dutch oven and fry until golden brown, should only take 2 to 3 minutes if fish is cubed.
- Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb any excessive oil.
- Whisk together sour cream, lime juice, sriracha, and cilantro together.
Lay out a warm tortilla on a desired serving plate, spreading evenly with salsa verdecita. Add cabbage then top with tempura fish.
Top with desired toppings.
Top it off with sririacha crème and serve with a lime wedge.