Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Following the Leader... sort of!

I’m not a recipe follower…well in truth; I’m not a follower in anything I do.  I just don’t have it in me… But when it comes to recipes, I love to read them…I love to get ideas from chefs and see what they do to make and create a dish.  Yes – Food Network is on in my house pretty constantly! If I decide to try a dish, I’ll research online and in cookbooks to find many different interpretations of the dish - I’ll read several recipes and then formulate my own from some of the ideas I’ve gotten. 

I don’t take well to measurements either.  Too particular for me…too precise; I talk in terms of splashes, pinches, handfuls, chunks… hardly ever do I deal with tablespoons and cups… I get that from my Grandmother (remind me to tell you the story some time of Grandma’s pierogies and rabbit ears!).

So be honored (well, not honored, but maybe impressed?) that I’m actually measuring and writing down some of my recipes to share with you! 

I’ve been in a fish mood for a while, so that’s what’s for dinner tonight! I love seafood…shellfish more especially (even though I have to be very, very careful with Lobster and Crab)…but there are a few fish that I do enjoy.  Sole, Chilean Sea Bass Tilapia, Halibut, Cod and Salmon for the most part are my constants with  Sole being the top.  These aren’t heavy fish and most of them have clean, bright, sea-flavors with out being fishy tasting.  So, let me give you the ingredient list:

Lemon Sole
½ cup of Flour
Salt and Pepper to taste
½ cup of dry white wine
1 lemon (zest of ½ the lemon and the juice of the whole lemon)
2 large tablespoons of Capers
1 jar of marinated artichoke hearts
1 tsp of Mustard
½ tsp of Corn Starch (optional)
2 tablespoons of butter, then 1 more tablespoon
A splash of Olive Oil

 So, we begin this dish with a gorgeous piece of Lemon Sole. 
I get most of my fresh fish at B&B Fish in Amityville… This huge sucker only cost me $14.22 and it was just shy of 1 pound.  

You want to blot the fish dry with some paper towel and then prepare your seasoned flour.  I just put in some salt and pepper (to taste)…but on occasion, I’ll throw in some Lemon Pepper too if I have it on hand.  

Mix your flour and then dredge the fish on both sides in the flower, shaking off the excess. 
Heat a pan on medium heat with a the 2 tablespoons of butter and a splash of Olive Oil – when it’s all melted, add the fish to the pan.  Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes and then flip.

You’ll cook it for about 2 to 3 minutes on the second side as well…remove from the pan.

Deglaze (fancy word for ‘put into the pan’) the pan with the white wine, lemon zest and the juice from ½ of the lemon… Make sure you scrape up the bits on the bottom of the pan while the liquid simmers. Add in your artichokes (which have been drained), the capers and the mustard. If that’s too much artichokes for you, only use what you’d like – for me, it’s my vegetables so I use them all!
Mix and simmer a bit more (maybe 2 minutes or so) and then add the last tablespoon of butter.  If you like a bit if a thicker sauce…whisk in the corn starch…If you are OK with a looser sauce, then leave that out.  We know I’m a saucy girl…so I do add the cornstarch. Add your sauce to your fish and enjoy!

 The fish is light, flaky and buttery and not fishy tasting or smelling at all… that’s one reason why I love Lemon Sole..  This dish could be made with Tilapia or Halibut as well.

 The sauce has a tart lemony flavor that is only enhanced by the twang of the mustard and softened a bit by the sweetness of the wine.  The capers bring a nice peppery bite to the whole dish, like little bursts of the sea in your mouth as you eat.  If you find the sauce too tart, when you deglaze the pan, add a bit of chopped Shallots or Onions to add some sweetness!

 Try this one out, friends…I guarantee you’ll love it!             

 When Dave is back to eating carbs, I’ll post my Linguini and White Clam Sauce for you… it’s one of my Favorites!! Tomorrow I'm trying a Lentil Quinoa we'll see how that turns out!

Until Next Time…

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