For the “Follow the Fish” issue of TK (Tasting Kitchen) magazine we did a shoot at Mizumi, a Japanese cuisine restaurant located in the recently opened Wynn Palace Macau. Like other shoots I’ve done for the publication we wanted to show the unique ingredients the chef likes to use followed by the actual plated dish. Shooting Japanese food is always a joy for me because of all its fresh ingredients and tasteful presentation. The person behind all of these colorful and tasty delicacies is Executive Chef Min Kim who has already earned the restaurant a Michelin Star for his work.
Above is a Hokkaido Hairy Crab which is the key ingredient for Chef Min’s Crab Salad with Sudachi Jelly and Assorted Pickles seen below.
For this shot of the fresh water eel the chef brought out an actual live eel which I then placed on a stone plate. Surprisingly the serpent like creature held his position long enough for me to make this image. We then quickly placed him back into his tank to await his fate.
For this dish the chef chose to char-grill the eel and serve with the Japanese condiments – wasabi, mountain pepper and yuzu.
Chef Min makes a point of letting guests know that not all tuna has to be big and fatty for it to taste good. For his Hay-Smoked Toro Tataki he first allows the fish to age in a zero degree enviroment to allow the flavors and tenderness of the meat to develop before adding a smoky flavor from dried rice stalks.
Abalone is one of those ingredients, and even cooked dishes, that is often a real challenge to make look good. My approach when faced which such dilemmas is just try and make it look interesting. The texture of this particular Abalone is actually quite fascinating to observe.
To prepare this dish Chef Min first slow cooks the abalone in a mixture of soy sauce, sake and its own juices before finishing it off at the Teppanyaki station in the restaurant.