Guacamole and Fish, Together at Last

aja- hamachi guacamole

No, really — it works. I swear.

On a recent trip to Chicago, the best meal I ate was at aja, an inventive find in the otherwise bland River North neighborhood downtown. Joshua Linton is a 30-year-old chef who has worked under a whole bunch of notable names, including our boy Jose Andres in D.C., so you know he’s got some tricks up his sleeve.

Before I dined at Aja, several Chicagoans all told me the same thing — be sure to try the hamachi guacamole. Um…what? That does not sound right. Clearly, I had to taste it.

The raw hamachi (a fish commonly called yellowtail on sushi menus) was placed over a sizable chunk of creamy, lime-y guacamole, which was sitting in a little pool of soy sauce, with a few jalapenos and red onions thrown on top for a spicy kick.

You don’t pick this up and eat this like it’s a piece of sashimi. Rather, they give you crispy chips to scoop it up with, just like it’s a regular guacamole. The textures of the fish and guac were surprisingly complimentary, and each chip had just enough flavors on it that it didn’t go over the top. It’s one of those dishes where one more ingredient would have made it awful, but this was just crazy enough to be brilliant.

So next time you need a secret ingredient to add to guacamole, don’t forget to consider raw fish.

(Photo: Courtesy Aja)

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One comment

  • gansie September 1, 2010  

    i love the ratio of guac to fish, it’s like 6:1.

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