With hints of spice and a gorgeous acidity from the pickled tomatoes, this mackerel starter from Martin Wishart is a bold dish comprised of complex flavours. Cooking the mackerel sous vide ensures a tender finish, with a quick char from a blowtorch adding that delicious crispy skin.
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Preheat a water bath to 46°C
To prepare the pickling liquor for the tomatoes, place the water, white wine vinegar and sugar in a medium-sized pan and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and allow to cool
200g of water
125g of white wine vinegar
100g of sugar
Thinly slice the tomatoes to a 2mm thickness, season with salt and place into a kilner jar. Pour the cooled pickling liquor over and close the lid
2g of salt
Next, prepare the mackerel. Remove both fillets from the mackerel and remove any bones. Lightly season the fillets, place in a large vacuum bag and fully seal in a chamber sealer. Cook in the water bath for 8–10 minutes
2 whole mackerel
salt to season
pepper to season
For the tomato water, place all of the ingredients except for the xanthan gum into a blender and blitz to lightly crush
1kg plum tomatoes
5g of celery salt
2 drops of Tabasco
200ml of water
1 garlic clove
5g of basil
Pass the water through a fine sieve, then through muslin cloth. Once strained, weigh out 500ml of tomato water and whisk in the xanthan gum to thicken. Strain once more to ensure there are no lumps
3.5g of xanthan gum
Remove the mackerel from the bag and place onto a wire rack or heatproof surface. Using a blowtorch, colour the skin until charred
To plate the dish, place a small amount of the pickled tomatoes in a shallow bowl, place the mackerel on top and pour the tomato water around the mackerel
Scatter more of the pickled tomatoes on top of the mackerel, along with broken-up pieces of the burrata cheese. To finish, using a fine grater, generously grate over the cinnamon stick and add a few basil leaves
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