Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I admit, I have a fear of cooking fish. So simple one would think. When raw it tastes pure like the ocean. But leave it in the oven too long and it becomes chewy and fishy.

The other day I finally made some progress.

I had decided to make this recipe for halibut poached in carrot juice and cilantro from Traunfeld's "Herbal Kitchen," but when I stopped off at the store post-call and exhausted I didn't actually have the recipe in hand so somehow I decided I needed whole carrots instead of the juice. After sleeping for a few hours, I meandered to the kitchen and found my mistake, but decided to wing it. Not usually a good idea, but I was intrigued by the idea of poaching in some kind of juice, carrot or not.

I pondered my options. Steam the greens and puree them? I did this for a "Happy in the Kitchen" recipe that turned out pretty awesome but I have this lowly blender and it was a tough job. I tried boiling the greens to see if the water developed any kind of nice flavor, no go. Well maybe I'll just boil the hell out of the carrots and see what that water tastes like. But then I forgot and added salt and the water tasted just like the ocean, not even a little carroty.

I finally decided to just drain the carrots and puree them, which remarkably worked though they weren't quite sweet enough so I added some orange juice and cider for some liquid and to replace the lime juice (forgot that too). Then I put in the ginger, shallots and vermouth. Brought it to a boil, cooked it a few minutes to soften the shallots, threw in the fish and turned the heat down to nothing for 7 minutes. Whisked in some butter. Sprinkled on some cilantro. Fabulous. The fish was melt in your mouth soft and set off by the subtle sweetness of the carroty-citrus sauce.

The thing that really fascinates me is that this is how I make poached eggs.....boil the water and then turn it off, leave the eggs 6 minutes. They come out all silky smooth. Never thought of it for fish. And there's so many options! You could poach the fish in anything really. It's all kind of exciting though sadly this was a night that Cobe was away so I had no one to share my cooking marvel with . I'll have to make it for him next time.

Fish: B

1 comment:

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