We get multiple opportunities to have a New Years celebration. If you are wondering how that is possible, let me tell you. I will start with our birthdays. This is a special day that I consider this our very own “personal” new year. Next, we have January 1st. This is a fun tradition that brings the holidays to a close and kicks off the calendar new year. Then, we have the Chinese New Year. A festive celebration of the Chinese calendar that has gone global. It happens to fall on February 5th, so this also a perfect time to “reset” your resolutions if January did not go as well as you planned ;-).
One of the many things I love about the Chinese New Year is the emphasis on good fortune and prosperity, which is universal. “Eating a whole fish from head to tail, symbolizes having a prosperous year, from the beginning to the end”. (Source: 8 Lucky Recipes for the Chinese New Year)
In honor of this tradition, here is a delicious recipe that I will be enjoying with friends for the Chinese New Year. And because you cannot have fish without the perfect white wine…I have you covered on that too. Le Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay is a delectable wine that you sip, serve, and use in this recipe.
For my wine aficionados and those of you just like wine, this is an overview of the Chardonnay notes: Apricot, lemon, gala apple, subtle oak and spice aromas. Lemon drop, white stone fruit yellow plum and honeydew melon on the palate. Richly textured and concentrated with balanced acidity that drives a lingering finish.
If you happen to have guests who prefer red wine (as I often do), this Le Crema Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir is also one of my favorites! On the nose red cherry, plum, pomegranate and sweet tobacco. On the palate, multi-layered red, blue and black berry fruit, plums and cherries, and a hint of blood orange underpin subtle layers of exotic spice and toast. Fine tannins and balanced acidity drives along finish.
Whole Roasted Trout with Sesame, Ginger & Bok Choy
Yield 4 servings
- 1 - 1.5 lb Whole fish (trout or similar variety)
- 469g (2 bunches) baby Bok choy
- 4 oz ( ½ cup) La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay
- 117g (1 small) red onion, sliced
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil, plus some for drizzling divided
- 28g (¼ cup) butter, softened
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Sesame seeds, toasted
- Fresh cilantro
- Lemon, sliced or in wedges
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and drizzle oil lightly as a base layer.
- In a small bowl, using fork, smash together butter and ginger. Set aside.
- In a cast iron skillet over medium heat, warm 3-4 tablespoons olive oil. Add onion and bok choy, cut side down, and sear until golden brown, 2-4 minutes per batch (you may need to do a few batches pending pan size).
- Turn bok choy cut side up. Add La Crema Sonoma Coast Chardonnay. Allow to cook for 2 more minutes and then pull from heat.
- Layer enough bok choy and onion mixture evenly on parchment to cover the base of the fish for cooking; season with salt and pepper.
- Rinse whole fish and season with salt and pepper. Set on bok choy bed. Using a spatula, spread the ginger butter inside the cavity of the fish generously. You will have leftovers. Add fresh cilantro.
- Drizzle skin with olive oil to coat any leftover pan drippings. Place in oven.
- Bake until fish is just cooked through, 15-25 minutes (depending on size).
- Lay fish whole on platter and garnish with sesame seeds, cilantro and lemon. Use a knife to flake flesh off the bone
I wish you all good fortune and prosperity in this new year! Enjoy your bottle (or bottles 🙂 of La Crema Sonoma Chardonnay, this recipe, and doing your own reading on the history of the Chinese New Year. Be sure to put out tangerines/oranges for good luck and you’ll be set! If you want some additional recommendations on what to serve with your fish, see below for the full menu:
ON THE TABLE
Chinese New Year Roasted Trout with Sesame, Ginger & Bok Choy
Sautéed green beans with black sesame seeds
Fresh salad rolls
Pork and ginger pot stickers
Peanut sauce (or similar variety)