Arctic Char is such a great fish, especially for the home cook. Its fat content helps keep the fish nice and juicy (and difficult to overcook). It, like it’s salmonoid counterpart, is also a fairly hearty fish which holds up well against heavy seasoning making it perfect for this Indian inspired treatment.
Traditionally, tandoori anything would be cooked in a tandoor, which is a type of high heat oven, but in this case, we’re going to use a broiler or oven turned to as high as it will go to try and approximate the effect. We also used a pre-made tandoori spice paste which works perfectly well. There are so many great varieties out there these days and they’re available at most major grocery stores, but if you wanted to get adventurous and make your own, you could just as easily do that.
Tandoori Inspired Arctic Char with Pear Chutney
4 4-6oz arctic char fillets, skin off
1 cup tandoori paste
2 cups roughly chopped pears
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons garam masala (optional)
1/2 cup golden (or regular) raisins
1/4 cup rice wine (or apple cider) vinegar
1 cup water
2 tablespoons of butter
Salt and pepper
Place fish in a large ziplock bag along with the tandoori paste. Gently massage the paste onto the fillets and allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes.
Add the pears, shallots, raisins, ginger, cinnamon, and garam masala to a large skillet over medium-high heat and saute until the shallots begin to soften and the pears start to color. Add the vinegar and cook until almost completely reduced and then add the water. Simmer and cook down until the pears a fully softened, the water has fully reduced, and the remaining mixture is sticky and jammy. If the pears still aren’t fully soft by the time the water has reduced out, add more water and repeat until the pears have cooked down. Season with salt and pepper.
Place the salmon on a lightly oiled baking sheet and drizzle with lightly with olive oil. Place into a pre-heated oven set to broil and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the fish easily flakes apart.
Serve the arctic char with the chutney and some jasmine or basmati rice and maybe some coconut milk braised greens.