Recipe: Local Caviar with Sturgeon

Northern Divine sturgeon caviar makes a short trip from the Sunshine Coast to your kitchen

June 18, 2015

This article was originally published  in the June 2015 issue of Vancouver magazine.

Produced in Sechelt, B.C., Northern Divine’s organic, sustainably harvested sturgeon caviar has been generating substantial buzz among local chefs, home cooks, and everyday gourmands. The brand’s first spawning began in 2000 with eggs collected from the Fraser River watershed. The sturgeon and its eggs are now housed in massive freshwater tanks that use enviro-friendly heating and filtering systems.

(The sturgeon themselves are later harvested for human consumption.) Look for Northern Divine at some of the city’s best seafood-forward restaurants, and try it with this recipe from Chris Stewart, executive winery chef at Mission Hill Family Estate.

THE RECIPE

Sturgeon with Caviar

PICKLED ONIONS
1/2 cup red- or white-wine vinegar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
1 pinch kosher salt
1 pinch mustard seeds
1 pinch coriander seeds
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup shallots, peeled and halved
1/2 cup green onion (white parts only), sliced

NORI-INFUSED OIL
1 cup canola oil
4 sheets nori

STURGEON
4 5-oz pieces sturgeon, skin removed
salt to taste
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup unsalted butter

In a small saucepan, combine the vinegar, sugar, water, salt, spices, and bay leaf and bring to a simmer to dissolve the sugar. Allow to cool for five minutes, then pour the liquid over the shallots and green onion in a bowl. Allow to cool to room temperature (about 20 minutes), then refrigerate.

Meanwhile, heat the canola oil to lukewarm. Remove from heat and break the nori sheets into the oil, allowing them to infuse it for 20 minutes.

For the sturgeon, heat the canola oil in a nonstick pan until very hot. Season the fish with salt, then place it in the pan. Let it cook for 40 seconds, then add the butter. Remove the pan from the heat; the butter will give the fish a golden-brown sear. Flip it over and continue to spoon the browned butter and oil over the fish until you feel it is cooked.

Plate the sturgeon and spoon a small amount of the nori-infused oil over top, with some of the pickled onions surrounding it. Garnish with a tablespoon of Northern Divine caviar on top of each piece. Serves four.

AROUND TOWN

Find Northern Divine caviar on the shelves at various locations of Choices Markets (Choicesmarkets.com) and Urban Fare (Urbanfare.com), and at Osaka Supermarket (2200 Park Royal S., West Vancouver, 778-279-8988). Or have an extravagant night out and enjoy it with classic accompaniments at Le Crocodile (909 Burrard St., 604-669-4298, Lecrocodilerestaurant.com)

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