Photo credit: Anatoli Michaelo
I recently had the pleasure to visit Hashaked restaurant, a true Tel Avivian institution for the lovers of fresh fish and sea food. The restaurant had been part of the Tel Aviv culinary scene for more than 50 years now, starting as a family joint that served food rooted deep in the family’s Jewish-polish background and evolved into the current menu that reflects the restaurant’s transition to a fine sea food & fish restaurant. The restaurant managed to gather a wide base of regulars, that keep coming back for the amazing food and personal touch. People used to travel near and far for the restaurant’s chopped liver, homemade icura salad (fish eggs salad) and the famous -complimentary! – Friday apple strudel, freshly made by Haim Shalev’s (the owner) mother.
I met Haim on a Sunday morning, and we had a long chat about smoking fish (the restaurant’s trade secret), fishing regulations (did you know that fishing is not allowed during the months of June-August ?) , and the evolution of the restaurant in the past 50 years.
Haim insisted the I try the smoked trout and salmon, as well as the entire array of salads and appetizers. For a business lunch, including a main dish and unlimited drinks, you’ll pay only 99 NIS (approx. $25/ person). I can guarantee that you will not leave the restaurant hungry.
I was expecting a huge smoking oven, but discovered that the oven itself is hardly noticeable in the kitchen – you can’t foresee its capabilities from the outside.
The restaurant also started to hold a weekly BBQ on Monday evenings, featuring specials like seared scallops, Grouper skewers and filled fish.
The appetizers were great – refreshing, delicious and well seasoned. The hot falafel was one of the best that I’ve tasted, and the Icura was addictive. Everything is homemade and made fresh. I received 12 different types of salads and all were excellent. The salads were served alongside fresh bread from the adjacent “Lehamim” bakery, another local institution.
After the appetizers, I was served with a generous plate of smoked Trout and Salmon which were succulent and full of flavor. I understood why so many restaurants were trying to get a hold of Haim’s smoking secrets.
Business lunch: Sunday-Thursday, 12:00-17:00 PM, 99 NIS/ person. Including unlimited drinks.
The restaurant was kind enough to give us one of its signature recipe for a filled sea bass. Try it at home!
Filled Sea bass/ Hashaked restaurant
For the fish:
600 grams sea bass fillet, divided to 2 portions
1 tbsp olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp chopped corriander
1/2 clove of garlic
Grind 300 grams of the sea bass. add chopped onions, coriander, garlic, olive oil and seasoning.
fill the other sea bass fillet with the filling, hold both sides of the fish and close with a toothpick to create a pinwheel.
For the sauce:
1 cup water
1/4 cup distilled vinegar
1 chopped carrot
1 onion, sliced into rings
1 tsp red curry paste
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
several rosemary leaves
Preheat the oven to 180 c/360 f . Bring all of the sauce’s ingredients to a boil and simmer for 10 min.
Arrange the sea bass wheels in a deep baking pan and top with the sauce. bake for 20 min. Serve and enjoy!