WE ALWAYS look for local Long Island fluke for this dish because when it gets to Hunts Point, the vibrant market in the Bronx, the fish literally shimmers as if it just couldn’t get any fresher.
At the restaurant, we add freshly grated wasabi, shiso, and soy, an essential Japanese scenario, and then set the stage for this delicate fish cured in salt, sugar, and lemon and lime zest. A creamy shiso bavarois balances the tangy and lean petals of fluke.
In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients except the gelatin with 3 tablespoons water, cover, and refrigerate for 48 hours. Strain. Soak the gelatin sheets in a bowl of ice water for 10 minutes; squeeze dry. In a small saucepan, heat one-quarter of the strained liquid to just below a simmer. Remove from the heat, stir in the gelatin to dissolve, add the remaining liquid, and strain into a flat, rimmed container to reach ¼-inch thickness. Refrigerate, flat, for 4 hours, or until firm. Cut into ¼-inch cubes. Reserve, chilled.
For the Roasted Beets
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, toss each variety of beet separately with olive oil to coat and season with salt and pepper. Wrap them separately in aluminum foil packets and place them on a baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes, or until tender. Remove and, once cooled enough to handle but still warm, peel and discard the skin. Cut the beets into ¼-inch slices and cut into decorative shapes such as rectangles, diamonds, or circles. Reserve, chilled.
For the Shiso Bavarois
Bring a medium pot filled with salted water to a boil; place a bowl of ice water on the side. Boil the shiso for 20 seconds. Strain and chill in the ice water. Squeeze dry and transfer to a blender along with 2 tablespoons ice water. Puree until very smooth but still thick, adding more water only if needed. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve.
Soak the gelatin sheets in ice water for 10 minutes; squeeze dry. In a small saucepan over low heat, heat one-third of the shiso puree, then stir in the gelatin until dissolved. In a medium bowl, combine the warm shiso puree with the remaining puree. While the mixture is still slightly warm, fold in the whipped cream until no streaks remain, then season with salt. Spread the mixture onto a parchment-lined baking pan in a ½-inch layer and freeze, uncovered. Once frozen, cut into six 4½ x 1-inch rectangles, cover, and refrigerate.
For the Edamame Puree
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil and place a bowl of ice water on the side. Add the edamame and boil for 1 minute, or until tender. Strain and chill in the ice water; reserve 30 beans for garnish. Place the remaining edamame in a blender. Heat the cream to a simmer and, while the blender is running, stream in the cream to make a smooth, thick puree. Pass through a fine-meshed sieve; season with Tabasco, salt, and pepper and reserve, chilled.
For the Beet Reduction
In a small saucepan over medium heat, reduce the beet juice to ½ cup. Whisk in the xanthan gum until dissolved. Reserve, chilled.
For the Sesame Dressing
In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients to combine, and season with salt and pepper. Reserve, chilled.
For the Cured Fluke
In a nonreactive container, combine the salt, sugar, and zests. Add the fluke and pack the salt mixture around to coat completely. Refrigerate for 45 minutes. Remove the fluke, rinse off and discard the salt mixture, and pat dry.
With a sharp slicing knife, starting at the tail end, cut the fillets diagonally against the grain into ⅛-inch slices. On a flat surface lined with plastic wrap, arrange the fish slices in a single layer and season with the olive oil, wasabi, and salt and pepper. Top with more plastic wrap and gently pound with a meat mallet to flatten into thin, translucent petals. Reserve, chilled.
When ready to serve, season the beets and fluke separately with sesame dressing to taste.
For each serving, place a rectangle of bavarois at the center of a chilled plate and top with a crouton. Arrange 3 or 4 petals of fluke on top of the crouton to resemble waves. Garnish the perimeter with a line of 5 edamame puree dots, alternating with pieces of diced ponzu gelée. Top the puree dots with the reserved edamame. Swipe a line of beet reduction at a right angle to the line of edamame and gelée and arrange 3 pieces (one of each color) of beets in front. Garnish the top of the fluke with micro shiso and red seaweed salad.