THE RECENT Holy Week allowed us to spend some quality time with family in my kids’ new favorite weekend getaway – Peninsula de Punta Fuego.
Located in Nasugbu, Batangas, it is just a two-hour drive (depending on traffic, of course) from Alabang.
The brief vacation also allowed me to reacquaint myself with two things – Punta Fuego’s beautiful sunsets and the exquisite cuisine of Mikel Arriet, executive chef and operations manager of Club Punta Fuego.
While I have tried many of Chef Mikel’s dishes, one will always stand out on my mind – the Salmon in a Jar. A unique dish he brought over from Spain, it almost melts in your mouth. Fortunately, I was able to convince him to share his recipe for this simple yet amazing dish.
Salmon in a Jar
1 small jar with metal hinge and rubber seal
50g extra-virgin olive oil
1 slice ginger
1 fresh thyme branch
½ tsp black pepper corn
70 g salmon fillet
Fill the jar with 50 g extra-virgin olive oil, and add the black pepper corn, thyme branch and ginger slice. Any kind of olive oil will do but extra-virgin is best to achieve the desired results.
Cut about 70 g of fresh salmon fillet and lightly apply salt and pepper. Place the salmon fillet in the jar and seal.
Put the jar in the steam oven set at 70°C. Remove after 3 minutes.
Using a Bain Marie
If you don’t have a steam oven, a Bain Marie can be used.
To do a Bain Marie you fill a pot with water and heat to 70°C. You can use a thermometer to check the temperature. Then immerse the jar in the water and remove after 3 minutes.
Chef Mikel also recommends serving it with Baba Ghanouj, a Mediterranean eggplant dish.
Extra-virgin olive oil
Grill the eggplant over a charcoal grill to give it a nice smokey flavor. Then once grilled, peel and put it into the mixer (with pulp).
Add a pinch of garlic, some lemon juice, a pinch of tahine and finally a drop of extra-virgin olive oil. Mix until you get a fine pureed texture.
Serve the salmon as is in the jar with a nice serving of Baba Ghanouj.
This is not a dish that is commonly served at Club Punta Fuego. However, if you find yourself in the area and manage to convince Chef Mikel to prepare it for you, you will be treated to the most delectable and healthy salmon dish that simply melts in your mouth like cotton candy.