Ashley Palmer-Watts, who has been for many years the executive chef of Dinner by Heston and the Fat Duck Group, is during the lockdown working on the plans for the future and of course cooking! He is sharing one of his favourite dishes for cooking at home:
“This is a dish that I brought back from my travels in Chang mai, Thailand. I was lucky enough to visit an ancient tribe in the hills, who I cooked along with. They showed a dish made from water, a local root, some wild cabbage and the most magical transformation that happened when the man added his chilli paste at the last minute. We cooked this in a pot over an open fire. The sum of its parts was so much more than I could ever imagine. This chilli paste has been part of his tribal culture since the beginning as early as 1125 BC when the ‘Pakakayor’ tribe entered south east Asia, Originating from Mongolia.
Having cooked various versions of this humble dish for different people, the effects certainly are repeated although my version is somewhat more complex but the dish can be as simple or complex in the combinations of incredible produce you have on hand. I love this dish as it really takes me back through centuries of culture and I feel privileged that that day that man passed this magical dish on to me.”
Roast Cod with Thai Clam broth
2 portions of Cod (100-120g each)
5g flat leaf parsley
1g Coriander leaves (15 leaves)
Zest of 1/2 lime
Olive oil to bind
3 Jerusalem artichokes
35g sea beet leaves (good handful) or seasonal greens
20g rock samphire
Slice of ginger
450g vegetable stock
100g coconut water
35g white soy
4 sprigs of coriander
2 fresh red chilli (shredded)
2 small cloves of garlic
5 dried chillies
For the broth
Peel and cut the artichokes into 1.5cm pieces. Place in a pan with veg stock, coconut water & sliced ginger, simmer until tender.
Meanwhile crush the garlic, dried chilli and salt in a pestle and mortar to a paste.
Start steaming the fish.
Add the clams and cook for 2 minutes until they begin to open then add the sea beet leaves, Rock samphire, purslane, white soy and cook for a further 1 minute.
Stir in the chilli paste to taste.
Spoon out into a bowl, season the fish with salt and black pepper and place into the bowl.
Add the remaining sea vegetables over and around.
Sprinkle the shredded chilli and a little coriander over the dish.
Parsley & lime dressing
Finely chop the parsley and mix with the zest of 1/2 a lime. Add a small amount of olive oil to combine and reserve until assembling the dish.
For the Fish
Pre heat a non stick pan with a little olive oil and lightly season the fish with sea salt.
Roast the cod on both sides until lightly golden in colour, remove from the pan and place on a tray to continue cooking with the residual heat. If the pieces of cod are thick, place in a pre heated oven at 150c until cooked.
Remove from the oven, season with freshly ground black pepper, course sea salt and a little lime juice.
Place the artichoke & sea vegetable broth in the centre of a bowl, place the fish on top and drizzle the broth with the parsley, coriander & lime dressing over the clams.
Finish with a few leaves of coriander and the shredded fresh chilli.