Sunday, November 8, 2009
Halibut With Demi-Glace
The Washington Post, October 28, 2009
This is very luxurious food. Halibut flesh has a lovely, meaty quality, and when the fish is served with a meat-based sauce, that quality is accentuated.
It calls for a rich, gelatinous sauce such as the Easy Demi-Glace. Commercially available demi-glace is often quite salty; the related recipe is made with no salt, so season accordingly. Here, the homemade demi-glace is flavored with some spices and a splash of red wine.
Serve with boiled fennel, asparagus, boiled turnips or simply good bread.
4 to 6 medium cloves garlic, halved lengthwise
1/3 cup Easy Demi-Glace (see related recipe)
1 whole star anise and/or a 1/4-inch piece of a vanilla bean
Splash white wine (optional)
Flour, for coating the fish
Freshly ground black pepper
2 skinless halibut fillets, about 1/3 to 1/2 pound each
Bring a small saucepan of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the garlic and cook for 10 minutes, then strain.
Bring the Easy Demi-Glace to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
Add the star anise and/or vanilla bean and the boiled garlic (to taste), plus a splash of wine, if using. Cook for about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has reduced to a sauce with a thick consistency. Keep warm on the lowest setting.
Lightly season the flour with salt and pepper, then use the seasoned flour to lightly coat the fish, shaking off any excess.
Melt a little butter in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, being careful not to burn the butter. Add the fish and sear on both sides; this should take 6 to 8 minutes total, depending on the thickness of the fillets.
Just before serving, whisk a little butter into the demi-glace sauce. Add salt to taste and adjust the seasoning as needed; mash the garlic, if desired. Discard the star anise and/or vanilla bean.
Divide the fish between individual plates and pour the sauce over or around the fish. Serve immediately.
From Gastronomer Andreas Viestad.