Turku Menu 2019 - Karu: Whitefish of the Rising Sun


For 6
Difficulty: Difficult
Time required: Several hours

Winner of the Turku Menu 2019 competition, Karu, served a starter of amazu-marinated whitefish, yuzu dontare with mussels, blue mussel loaf, and wasabi oil. Jere Saarinen and Ville Rantanen combined the Finnish raw material provided by the judges, whitefish, innovatively with Asian tastes typical of Karu.

PLEASE NOTE! The recipe was made by top-level chefs for restaurant conditions. It is extremely demanding, some ingredients are difficult to acquire, seasoning has been left to the sense of taste, and many ingredients are marked in grams in order to achieve perfect accuracy. In addition, the recipe may include too much of some components compared to what is necessary for a portion, because in a restaurant kitchen the components do not need to be used at the same pace. However, the recipe provides an interesting view of the operating principles of a restaurant kitchen, and the most enterprising readers can try to prepare a top-level restaurant dish at home.

1 whole whitefish

The Amazu Ponzu marinade
2 dl suehiro vinegar
1 dl usukuchi soy (light-coloured soy)
1 dl ponzu

Fillet the fish. Use the rest of the fish for the dashi broth. Mix the ingredients of the marinade. Marinate the fillets for 20 minutes before serving. Cut the sashimi to pieces.

Blue mussels
500 g blue mussels
2 l water
1 l sake

Mix the sake, water, and salt. Bring to the boil and add the mussels. Remove the mussels when they open, and cool down the mussels and the broth.

Blue mussel loaf
meat from the mussels
200 g smoked whitefish
1 spring onion
½ onion
1 dl sour cream
2 tsp. whitefish roe

Finely chop the mussels, whitefish, and onions, and mix with the sour cream and roe.

Wasabi oil
2 packets of wasabi leaves
5 dl rapeseed oil
1 bundle parsley
1 bundle lovage
a drop of yuzukoshō (if available)

Mix all ingredients in a pot and heat slightly. Season with salt and sugar. Leave to cool slowly, mix in a blender until smooth, strain, can, and cool.

1 l of the broth that the blue mussels were cooked in
one 10x10 cm piece of kombu
10 g katsuobushi
the leftovers of the whitefish

Place the leftovers of the fish and the kombu in the cold mussel broth. Heat to the boil, add the katsuobushi, and boil for 3 minutes. Remove the kombu. Keep the temperature at 80–90 degrees under a lid for two hours.

Yuzu Dontare                 
2½ dl sugar                              
3½ dl dashi                               
3 dl soy                        
1 dl mirin                      

Mix the ingredients and heat until the sugar has melted.

Compile the portion in the way you wish or according to the picture. The Karu dish also used whitefish roe, kohlrabi in thin slices, seaweed purée, hijiki seaweed, dried red sisho, cornflower, and red perilla sprouts for decoration.

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