Friday, October 26, 2012
Halibut with Lemon Sauce and Borscht
I went to the store a bit late looking for fish or pork. I found two pieces of Halibut packaged yesterday and marked down to less than half price to clear. We're having Halibut! Lemons were on for .99 so a bought a couple extra and I already had cauliflower. Potatoes, fish and cauliflower is going to make a pretty bleak looking meal. Cauliflower on beat greens and borscht on the side? Sounds good, I bought some beets and sour cream.
Using the recipe in Joy of Cooking as a model, I started the soup first. I peeled and diced a small onion, a carrot and 3 beets. I sweated the onion and carrot first then added the beets and covered the lot with beef stock. Add a bay leaf and simmer for 20 minutes then add 1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon vinegar, a cup of shredded cabbage and salt to taste. Simmer 15 minutes more then serve with a dollop of sour cream on top.
I put potatoes on to cook for mashed and got the cauliflower prepped and in the steamer. I wanted a light seasoning for the fish so I put a tsp of onion powder, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/4 tsp turmeric (optional) and 1 tsp salt in the mortar and broke all the lumps up. I seasoned both sides of the fish and put it in a hot frying pan. I watch the color of the meat change from translucent to white as it cooks. When it is about half way up I turn the fish over. The second side takes less time to cook.
The lemon sauce was straight forward. A tablespoon of flour and one or two of oil. Make a slurry and cook off the flour taste. Remove the pan from heat and whisk in chicken stock till it is a thin sauce. Add the juice of half a lemon, a pinch of salt and put the sauce pan back on the stove. Add more stock as the sauce cooks and thickens.
The beet greens I decided to use the stems and leaves so I just chopped up the lot and put it in the steamer. The stems didn't cook through and were bitter so next time I'll discard them. When they were steamed I drained them and put them in the pot with a little butter, salt and extra virgin olive oil.
I plated the greens then the cauliflower on top and the fish and potatoes on the side. Lemon sauce over the fish and cauliflower. Fern thought the fish was delicious, I thought it was good but not quite delicious. It might have been better without the turmeric. For vegetables I would use beet greens and carrots next time. The borscht was very good but a bit too much food.