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THE Dish: Baked Sea Bass Mike Lata's way

(CBS News) Self-taught chef Mike Lata began his culinary career at an early age, working in kitchens in his native New England in Boston, and other American cities, such as New Orleans and Atlanta before landing in Charleston.

The hands-on chef is now a partner of Fig and the soon-to-open restaurant The Ordinary in Charleston. Lata, who won the James Beard Foundation Award for "Best Chef: Southeast" in 2009, is considered one of the best and brightest chefs in the south.

On "CBS This Morning: Saturday," Lata offered quite a catch - his ultimate dish: Baked Sea Bass with Capers Inlet Clams, Pickled Shrimp, Succotash, Lemon Posset and a drink called "Royal Bermuda Yacht Club."

All "CBS This Morning: Saturday" recipes
Blog: "What's Cooking"
Special section: Food and Wine


Baked Black Sea Bass with Capers Inlet Clams


  • 48 Littleneck clams, washed
  • White wine
  • Minced shallots
  • Sliced fresh garlic
  • Fresh thyme
  • Parsley stems
  • Chicken stock or fume
  • Pinch red pepper flakes

Sweat shallots, garlic and thyme. Add clams, wine, stock and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over high heat until most of the clams are open. Remove the ones that are open and leave the unopened ones behind on the heat until they open.

When all clams are open, strain the broth through a fine mesh strainer and reserve. Discard the vegetables.


  • 4 6-8 oz filets of black bass, scored
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Bay leaf
  • Thyme
  • Vermouth

Place the bass skin-side up in a casserole and drizzle with olive oil, vermouth, thyme, bay leaf; then sprinkle with salt. Bake at 375 until firm to the touch, about 8-10 minutes.


  • Asparagus, with bottom part peeled, sliced very thin on a bias
  • Leek coins, cut 1/4 inch thick
  • Blanched red new potatoes, boiled and sliced in coins, 1/4 inch
  • Thick carrots, channeled, sliced crosswise and blanched
  • Fresh-picked thyme
  • Chiffonade of parsley
  • Olive oil for drizzling
  • Cold butter, cubed

Add the broth and the veggies to the pan; add cubes of butter until emulsified and then add parsley and thyme. Pour contents over the fish until just barely covered.

Pickled Shrimp

  • 3 pounds of shrimp, peeled, de-veined
  • 1000 grams red onion, julienned
  • 175 grams peppers, julienned
  • 75 grams garlic, sliced
  • 375 grams carrot, channeled, cut thin crosswise, blanched
  • 375 grams fennel, shaved crosswise, blanched
  • 175 grams butternut squash, cut in 3/4" batons, blanched
  • 2 cups each white wine, white wine vinegar, and olive oil
  • 4 t ea coriander and cumin
  • 2 t ea caraway seed and fennel seed
  • 2 t picked thyme

Bring salted water to a boil and turn off heat. Stir in shrimp and let cook until firm but still slightly translucent in the center.

Sweat onion, peppers, garlic and spices until soft. Add wine, vinegar and thyme. Cook until veggies are al dente. Stir in the blanched vegetables and remove from heat. Let stand for 15 minutes then pour over the shrimp in a casserole. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hour or overnight. 

To see more of Lata's recipes for succotash, a dessert and drink, go to Page 2.


  • Butterbeans - as many of the following varieties that you can get: lady, pink eye, black eye, crowder, white acre, butter peas, English peas
  • Blanched zucchini, sliced in coins or half moons
  • Blanched white or bi-color corn, shucked
  • Sweet peppers (like banana peppers, lipstick, padron - the more colors, the better), sliced thin or diced
  • Fresh marjoram
  • Opal and green basil
  • Unsalted butter
  • Corn stock
  • Sungold tomatoes, blanched and peeled
  • Red onion, minced

Sweat the onions in olive oil until translucent. Add corn and peppers and marjoram. Sweat for 5 minutes until the peppers become soft. Add the beans, stock and butter and bring to a simmer to emulsify the butter and lightly coat the veggies. Add the zucchini and tomatoes, and basil. Stir to incorporate and serve with more basil and fresh ground black pepper as a garnish.

Lemon Posset

  • 2 c heavy cream
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • Juice of 2 lemons

Bring cream and sugar to a boil in a wide shallow pan. Reduce to aggressive simmer for 15 min. Pull off heat and add juice. Chill in serving vessel.

I added the zest and backed the sugar to 1/2 cup. Takes a solid 3 hrs to set.

"Royal Bermuda Yacht Club"

  • 1.75 oz Mt. Gay Rum
  • .5 oz Lime
  •  .25 oz Velvet Falernum
  • .25 oz Cointreau

We make this drink with freshly squeezed lime juice, double strained to maintain a crisp, clean drink, free of pulp and ice chips.

Velvet Falernum is a liqueur used in drinks of the Caribbean, with flavors of almond, clove, ginger and lime. We use John D. Taylor's; you can also find versions that are alcohol-free.

Mt. Gay is a rum from Barbados, which also has a history of sponsoring a number of boat races. Of course, Charleston is a port town, a sailing town, and a water town. What spirit better to enjoy in this climate than rum? A cornerstone of the beverage program at The Ordinary will be our rum selection, from easy, everyday rums for cocktails to fine sipping rums. The cocktail list will be very short (3 at a time), and the "Royal Bermuda Yacht Club" is one of our favorites.

See Lata's "CTM: Saturday" appearance in the video above.

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