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Seared Sea Bass and Arugula Salad with a Lemon Ginger Vinaigrette

Chef Sam Blackburn - seabass with an arugula salad with pickled berries and citrus ginger vinaigrette

Ingredients

For the pickled berries:

  • 1 ½ cups rice wine vinegar
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp mustard seeds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ Tbsp peppercorns
  • 2/3 cup ice water
  • 10-12 ea. California Giant Strawberries, cut in half lengthwise
  • ½ cup California Giant Blueberries
  • ½ cup California Giant Raspberries

For the citrus ginger vinaigrette:

  • 2 Tbsp fresh minced ginger
  • ½ Tbsp sambal oelek chili paste
  • 3 Tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 3 Tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 4 Tbsp of berry pickling liquid
  • ½ tsp sesame oil
  • 2/3 cup grapeseed oil (possibly a bit more)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the arugula salad:

  • 2 cups packed baby arugula
  • ½ head bibb lettuce, chopped
  • 2 carrots, shaved and cut into 1 ½” – 2” ribbons
  • ½ ea. red onion, sliced thin (with the grain)
  • ½ cup shelled pistachios, crushed (there are a lot of great flavors out there if you feel adventurous)

For the seared sea bass:

  • 2 Tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 4 ea. 4-5 oz. sea bass fillets
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

For the pickled berries:

  1. Combine vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds, peppercorns and bay leaves in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil.
  2. Stir to dissolve sugar and remove from heat.
  3. Add ice water and allow mixture to cool completely.
  4. Pour over berries and refrigerate up to 2 days in advance. Reserve.

For the citrus ginger vinaigrette:

  1. Combine all ingredients except the two oils in food processor, or in a container if using an immersion blender.
  2. Puree until smooth and slowly drizzle in sesame oil and then grapeseed oil to emulsify.
  3. Season with salt and pepper, adjust if needed (not all citrus fruit is the same, so this is where your judgement comes in). Reserve.

For the arugula salad:

  1. Combine all ingredients except the seared sea bass.

For the seared sea bass:

  1. Heat oil in large sauté pan over medium high heat until almost smoking.
  2. Season sea bass on both sides with salt and pepper.
  3. Sear sea bass 2-3 minutes on each side until a nice, light brown sear is achieved.
  4. Cook fish until internal temperature of 145F is reached, careful not to overcook.

Final:

  1. Toss a heaping handful of pickled berries into the arugula salad.
  2. Dress lightly with citrus ginger vinaigrette, season with salt and pepper.
  3. Toss to combine. 
  4. Top salad with piece of fish.
  5. Drizzle a little vinaigrette over the top and garnish with pistachios. Enjoy!

Chef Sam Blackburn

Sam-Blackburn-1-1

Sam Blackburn CEC, CCA, CDM / CFPP works for the Healthcare Operational Excellence Team for Sodexo North America where he gets to travel the country assisting in Culinary Operational Needs at various healthcare facilities.  Influenced by his great grandmother who was an excellent cook, he knew by age 15 that he wanted to be a chef and loves to try new things in the kitchen.  With over 16 years of experience, he relishes the opportunity to be able to really dig into the ever-changing landscape of the culinary scene right now.  The most important thing to Chef Sam is the continual quest to learn something new every day.

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Chef Sam Blackburn - seabass with an arugula salad with pickled berries and citrus ginger vinaigrette
45 mins
4 ea.
Winter's Best Recipe Collection | Download the eBook Here