murloco’s tacos [baja-style fish tacos]

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Hi! My name is Homebrewed, some of you may know me from Twitter. I am a huge fan of Warcraft and more recently Hearthstone. My favorite amphibious humanoid is the Murloc, I am even quite fluent in Nerglish. So, my recipe I want to share with you today is Murlocos, Baja-style Mur…fish tacos.

The weeks after I came back from BlizzCon I received some news from the doctor, in other words, I need to start eating healthier. So in this venture, I have been cooking at home a lot more and finding different ways to make some of my favorite food to fuel up into between work and gaming. I was inspired by a dish I had one time at The Reservoir – Restaurant and Tap Room – Waterbury.

There are some things you can do ahead of ahead to cut on the actual time from cooking to eating when you go to fry your fish and assemble your tacos. I recommend making the pickled jalapeños and the cilantro onion salsa the day before as it keeps for at about a week. Also, I do want to recommend, that when you slice the jalapeños you buy some cheap plastic gloves, powder free, to protect your hands.

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Total prep time for this dish is about 1 hour. Cook time is 40 minutes. This recipe will make roughly about 16 tacos. You will end up with leftover condiments! 

OPENING HAND

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EARLY GAME

Ingredients

  1. 3/4 cup water
  2. 3/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  3. 3 tablespoons white sugar
  4. 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  5. 1 clove garlic, crushed
  6. 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  7. 10 large jalapeno peppers, sliced into rings

Directions (Pickled Jalapeño)

  1. Combine water, vinegar, sugar, kosher salt, garlic, and oregano in a saucepan over high heat. Bring mixture to a boil, stir in jalapeno peppers and remove from heat. Let mixture cool for 10 minutes.
  2. Pack peppers into jars using tongs, cover with vinegar mixture, cover, and refrigerate until needed.

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MID RANGE

Ingredients

  1. 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  2. 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  3. 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  4. 2 teaspoons olive oil
  5. 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  6. 1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions (Cilantro Onion Salsa)

Chop everything, juice your lime, and place all the mixture into a mason jar and pop it in the fridge.

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Ingredients

  1. 3/4 cup cold seltzer water
  2. 1/2 large egg, beaten
  3. 1/4 cup cold vodka
  4. 2.5 ounces unbleached cake flour, by weight
  5. 2.5 ounces white rice flour, by weight
  6. 1 liter vegetable or sunflower oil
  7. 1 pound haddock or cod
  8. Red cabbage, sliced
  9. 16 corn tortillas
  10. Kosher salt

LATE GAME

Directions (Fish & Assemble)

  1. Slice up your cabbage and put asideblog_murlocostacos_cabbage
  2. Slice fish into pieces that are about two inchesin depthblog_murlocostacos_fish
  3. Heat oil in a cast iron Dutch oven to 375 degrees
  4. Combine seltzer, egg, and vodka in a bowl
  5. Combine rice flour and cake flour in a separate bowl
  6. When your oil reaches temperature, add the wet to the dry ingredients and whisk to combine and surround that bowl with ice on the outside to keep the batter coldblog_murlocostacos_batter
  7. Dip your fish into your batter, shaken off excess, and slowly place into the oil about four pieces at a time
  8. Cook for about two minutes until golden brown and remove from heat
  9. Place cooked fish on a paper towel and season with saltblog_murlocostacos_frying
  10. Heat your corn tortillas directly over the burner if you have a gas stovetop turning with tongs to heat them through or in a pan with a very slight mist of water
  11. Put everything together and enjoy!blog_murlocostacos_macro

Aaaaaughibbrgubugbugrguburgle!

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Special guest recipe by Homebrewed. He’s a  writer, a Hearthstone aficionado, and a Murloc whisperer! You can follow his adventures on his Twitter: @HomebrewedDwarf 

 

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fire spirit salmon [spicy salmon en papillote]

blog_firespiritsalmon_titleHey adventurer! Are you hungry after your long journeys through Azeroth? Well, I’ve cooked up a dish for you that’s straight from the wonderful nation of Pandaria.

This special recipe was created by the amazing Sha of Happiness. She has picked some of the most delicious dishes in all of Azeroth and re-created them in her kitchen.

I’m sure you’re hungry, so let’s get started on this very simple, but very delicious dish!

Recipe adapted from Fire Spirit Salmon by Sha of Happiness. 

UNIT COMPOSITION

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  1. salt
  2. pepper
  3. 2 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly
  4. 1 teaspoons of olive oil (or butter if you prefer)
  5. ~ 1 tablespoon of sliced ginger
  6. 1 tablespoon of miso paste
  7. 1 1/2 tablespoon of sesame seed oil
  8. 1 tablespoon of red chili paste
  9. 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  10. 1/2 white onion, diced
  11. 2 4oz cuts of salmon
  12. OPTIONAL: 3 – 5 sprigs of green onion (scallion)

BUILD ORDER

Prep time for this dish is roughly 15 minutes. Total cook time is about 10 minutes. This will make 2 servings.

I’ve made a slight deviation from Sha’s original recipe. In her recipe, she suggests cooking the salmon via pan or roasting it in the oven. I’ll be roasting it in the oven, but I made a minor change — I’m cooking it en papillote!

So, I’m sure you’re asking… What is en papillote? The term “en papillote” is French for “in parchment”. Basically, the method is you take some sort of food, wrap it into a little package and then cook it. Since the food is wrapped up in its own little container, it will basically be steamed by its own juices (or what ever liquid you’ve put in the pouch).

There are many regional variants on this type of cooking. Zongzi, which is a Chinese dish comprised of sticky rice and various fillings, uses this technique but with leaves. Zongzi is also insanely delicious, so if you ever have a chance to get one, I recommend it!

OPENING

  1. Set a pan on high-heat.
  2. Add in your olive oil.
  3. Sautee your garlic and onions.
  4. Remove from heat and set aside.

MID GAME

  1. In a bowl, combine your soy sauce, sesame sauce, and red chili paste.blog_firespiritsalon_mix
  2. Add in your sliced ginger. When the salmon has finished cooking, you will want to remove these slices before plating.
  3. Set aside and prepare your salmon!

LATE GAME

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 375° (~190° C). 
  2. Place your sauteed onions and garlic on one side of the parchment paper.blog_firespiritsalmon_cooking1
  3. Place your salmon on top of the onions and garlic.
  4. Season your salmon with salt and pepper.
  5. Pour the sauce over the salmon. (Optional: Place a few sprigs of green onion on top of the salmon)blog_firespiritsalmon_cooking2
  6. Fold the parchment paper over the salmon, making sure to leave air inside the package. Roll the sides of the parchment paper up, so that the package is sealed.blog_firespiritsalmon_cooking3
  7. Place in the oven and roast for about 7 minutes. Remove from the oven when done. Be careful when opening the package!blog_firespiritsalmon_cooking4
  8. EAT!

GG WP!

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A big thank you goes out to Sha for creating this amazing and healthy recipe! 😀 Salmon is good AND good for you. ❤

Reaper of Recipes Challenge Winner!

reaper_of_recipes_bannerIt’s time, Nephalem! It’s time to announce the winner of the Reaper of Recipes Challenge!

I must admit that I had an insanely difficult time choosing the winner. Even though the Diablo NA and EU community teams had chosen the top recipes from tons of entries, there was still the huge challenge of picking the overall best recipe. There were dishes from all walks of life — from savory dishes inspired by various regional cuisines to sinfully sweet treats with a very Diablo flare. Sanctuary is filled with tons of creative chefs!

But, one recipe stood out from the rest.

One nephalem traveled to the dusty deserts outside of Caldeum and captured a Sand Shark, cooked it up, and created a legendary Caldeum delicacy! I present to you the winning recipe of the Reaper of Souls Challenge:

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Fish-aficionados will note that the fish isn’t a hake, but rather a mackerel — I’ll explain why later.

The winning recipe, Sand Shark Caldeum Style, was artfully crafted by Louis S., though he is more commonly known in Sanctuary as Nerzulaman! Here’s the photo he submitted along with his outstanding recipe:

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FIERCE! He did an excellent job at recreating a Sand Shark in food form!!

So, if you want to try to create this delicious dish in the comfort of your own kitchen, here’s what you’re going to need to gather:

UNIT COMPOSITION

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Please note that I’ve made some rough conversions from metric to American standard measurement units. The units in parenthesis are the accurate measurements from Nerzulaman’s original recipe.

  1. salt
  2. pepper
  3. 1 teaspoon of nutmeg
  4. 2 teaspoon of olive oil
  5. 1 clove of garlic, minced
  6. 1 shallot, minced
  7. 1/2 of a red onion, diced
  8. 1 teaspoon of powdered hazelnut (50g)  (I bought whole hazelnut and grinded it on a microplane — this is roughly ~4 hazelnuts)
  9. 1 egg
  10. 1 lemon
  11. 1/2 cup of flour
  12. 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs
  13. 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar
  14. 1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream (15cl)
  15. 1 1/2 cup of rainbow quinoa, rinsed (180g)
  16. 1 firm apple (I used a granny smith apple)
  17. 1 whole hake, cleaned and gutted (25-30cm long, or ~11-12 inches) — (I substituted mackerel for hake here)

I mentioned a bit further up that the fish I used for this recipe is a mackerel instead of a hake. The silver hake is a species of hake typically found on the Eastern United States. Unfortunately, I’m on the Western United States, so finding whole hake is a bit more difficult here. I decided to go with a fish that was readily available here and is somewhat similar size to the hake. The mackerel is a bit smaller, so cooking times have been slightly adjusted.

Basically, my recipe is for tiny sand sharks, while Nerzulaman’s is for big sand sharks. 😛

If you’re looking for a fish that has a similar flavor to hake, cod is a good substitute. Mackerel belongs in the “oily fish” category (with salmon and tuna), while hake belongs to the “white fish” category (with cod and halibut).

Anyway, I’ve included Nerzulaman’s original cook times and mine in parenthesis.

BUILD ORDER

Total prep time for this dish is roughly 25 minutes. Cook time is roughly 35 minutes. This will make 2 servings.

OPENING

  1. Wash and cut your apple into two halves. Use one half and cut them into thin wedges (this will be used for the “fins”). Marinate these wedges in balsamic vinegar.
  2. Cut the rest of the apple into small cubes with your shallots, garlic, and red onion.
  3. Heat a pan on high heat and add in on 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
  4. Sautee your cubed apple, shallots, garlic, and red onion.blog_sandshark_cooking1
  5. Once they have caramelized, deglaze your pan by using some of the balsamic vinegar from your apples.
  6. Remove from heat and reserve. You’ll use this to stuff the fish.

MID GAME

  1. Empty and clean the cavity of the fish, and open its belly until the base of the tail.
  2. Use a sharp knife to score the skin around the tail, then remove the dorsal fin cutting along the dorsal cartilage head.
  3. Preheat your oven to ~350° F (180° C). Once your oven comes up to temperature, bake the fish for 5 minutes.blog_sandshark_cooking2
  4. Remove the fish from the oven and gently peel back the skin from tail to the head by pulling the skin along the line in the middle of the threads so as not to tear it. You will want to be extra careful with this process because you don’t want to damage the flesh of the fish. If you have patches of skin (especially around the fins) scrape them gently with the back of a knife lightly oiled, always from tail to head.
  5. Gently open the cavity of the fish and begin stuffing it with your filling. You’ll want to stuff the fish so that it will be able to stand on its own. If have extra stuffing, you can use it to prop his head up after cooking.
  6. Sprinkle your flour onto the fish. Gently rub off any excess flour.blog_sandshark_cooking3
  7. Mix your egg, remaining olive oil, juice from 1/2 of a lemon, and a pinch of salt in a bowl. This will be your egg wash.
  8. Generously brush the fish with your egg wash. Then, sprinkle your bread crumbs onto the fish. If you have excess, tap it off the fish.blog_sandshark_cooking4
  9. Set your oven to ~390°F (200°C) for 15 minutes (12 minutes for my mackerel). Use aluminum foil to cover the head to prevent tarnish (I failed and forgot to do this, so my sandshark is a bit…. uhhh, well let’s just say he should have used moisturizer). 
  10. While your fish is baking, prepare the quinoa.

LATE GAME

  1. In a saucepan, add your quinoa, 1 1/2 cup of water and your cream. Set your sauce pan to medium heat. Add in your hazelnut and nutmeg.
  2. Once the quinoa has absorbed all of the liquid, salt to taste.
  3. Now it’s time to build your plate! Fill a dish with your quinoa “sand”, and make a small indentation for your fish.
  4. Transfer your baked fish to the plate. Make slits on the fish for where you’d like to place your apple wedge fins. Insert the fins onto your fish. If your fins aren’t pointy enough, prune them with a pairing knife to your liking.
  5. Surround the fish with the “sand” and add in your apple wedge fins into the sand. These will be the Sand Shark’s claws.
  6. If desired, add in extra lemon juice on the fish and cream to your quinoa.
  7. Eat!

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Here’s how mine turned out. I definitely think Nerzulaman’s looks much cooler though. 🙂 I will admit that I ran out of apple slices for the fins on the side… I was snacking a bit too much during the cooking process!

GG WP!

Maybe your Sand Shark will turn out to be Razormouth and you’ll be able to snag an Essence of the Twin Seas.

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I wasn’t so lucky. But, he sure was delicious! 🙂

Just remember to be weary of bones when slaying this beast! Since this is full fish, there are still bones present in the flesh. To avoid the bones as best as possible, lay the fish on its side and enjoy it one side at a time. You should be left with the spine fairly intact.

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OM NOM NOM NOM!

So congratulations, Nerzulaman! Your creative recipe has earned you a fancy Horadric cache worth of goodies!

‘Till next time, Nephalem!