This month our featured “Fun Fish” is Goldspotted Sand Bass sourced from Baja California!
Goldspotted Sand Bass is named, aptly, due to the golden-orange spots covering its body and most fins. These fish typically dwell in and around rocky coral reefs at depths between 100-500 feet. In Baja, these fish are harvested mainly from fishing co-ops based in villages on the Baja Penninsula using small, open panga boats and traditional methods such as handlines and low-impact hand drawn nets.
This fish is often compared to grouper and is an excellent alternative to more expensive sea bass or snappers. Goldspotted Sand Bass have a firm, moist texture that flakes larger than most small fish with a mild flavor and moderate fat content. It can be prepared many ways, but its clean flavor makes it an excellent choice for ceviche.
This month, we teamed up with Chef Michael Poompan, Executive Chef of The Slate Hotel in Denver for our Fun Fish Cook Off. Chef Poompan created an amazing Aquachile recipe using the Goldspotted Sand Bass and prepared his recipe head-to-head with Chef Peter’s Sand Bass Ceviche at the Elevation Chef’s Playground. In the end, Chef Michael’s Aquachile dominated with its blend of refreshing spice, created by the use of the sand bass, cucumber and Arbol Chile powder.
If you’d like more information about Goldspotted Sand Bass or the Fun Fish program, reach out to your SFC rep today!
Goldspotted Sand Bass Aguachile
Recipe developed & prepared by Chef Michael Poompan, The Slate Hotel (Also featured on Instagram!)
- 1.5lb Sand Bass, diced
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 small white onion, julienne
- Kosher Salt, to taste
- 1/2 cucumber, seeds removed, diced
- 1/2 cucumber, sliced thin
- 1/2 avocado, diced
- 1/2 avocado, fanned
- 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
- 1 Fresno or Serrano, chopped
- Arbol Chile powder, to taste
- Combine sand bass, lemon juice, onion and salt and allow to marinate for 1 hour, refrigerated.
- Combine diced cucumber, diced avocado, sliced Fresno, and 3/4 of cilantro with the marinated fish. Season with salt.
- Use the sliced cucumber to make a ring for the ceviche on the plate.
- Squeeze excess lemon over ceviche.
- Top with chopped cilantro, fanned avocado, and additional chile to taste.
- Serve immediately. Chef Michael served his alongside freshly fried chips made from Raquelitas Tortillas.
PS the Elevation Reps Chef’s Playground is always open for chefs to visit and demo their products. If you’d like to find out more information or schedule a demo, click here!