Black Cod in Butter Lettuce Wraps

I have so many happy memories from participating in the festival over the years! I couldn’t be there in 2009, but Thomas Buckley, my executive chef from Nobu Miami Beach, was on hand, serving dishes from Nobu Miami: The Party Cookbook. This dish, one of our signatures, was a huge hit. In the restaurant we serve the black cod as an entrée, but for parties and special events we do this finger-food version, which is extremely popular. Even if I make 500 portions, it disappears faster than any other dish! The flavors are deep and intense, but the lettuce wrapping lends a light, fresh touch.


1 to 2 fillets black cod, skin on (12 ounces total), cut into 10 squares

10 teaspoons Nobu-Style Saikyo Miso (recipe follows)

10 pieces Garlic Chips (recipe follows)

2 ounces frozen kataifi dough, deep-fried

10 leaves butter lettuce, washed and crisped in cold water

1 thumb-size knob fresh ginger, peeled and slivered

Sear the skin side of the cod squares under a salamander or broiler; turn over, spread with the Saikyo Miso, and sear until the color changes.

Break the Garlic Chips and kataifi dough into the lettuce leaves. Top with the cod and slivered ginger. Then wrap the lettuce around the filling.

Nobu-Style Saikyo Miso


⅔ cup sake

⅔ cup mirin

1⅔ cups white miso

1⅛ cups sugar

In a medium saucepan, bring the sake and mirin to a boil over high heat to evaporate the alcohol.

Turn the heat to low and add the miso, mixing with a wooden spoon. When the miso has dissolved completely, turn the heat up to high and add the sugar, stirring constantly with the wooden spoon to prevent scorching. When the sugar has dissolved completely and the mixture becomes a smooth paste, remove from the heat and cool to room temperature.

Garlic Chips


3 cups canola oil

10 cloves garlic, thinly sliced on a mandoline

1 cup whole milk

Heat the oil to 300°F in a skillet.

Place the garlic and milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil (to remove any bitterness). After a few seconds, remove the garlic. Wash in cold water and pat dry.

Deep-fry the garlic slices in the oil over low heat. When they turn light golden, immediately transfer them to a paper-lined dish (they will continue to cook).