Friday, April 6, 2012

Monkfish medallions encrusted with capers and orange zest

                                             6 - 8 Portions


2 lbs Monkfish tail, after filleting 
2 T Olive oil 
1 small bottle capers 
1⁄2 T. piment d'Espelette
Pinch saffron 
Zest from 2 oranges


  • Rinse reserved fish bones, cover with about 2 liters of cold water in a wide pot, add 1 bay leaf and 2 sprigs fresh thyme, 1 C. dry white wine, bringing to boil. 
  • Skim the floating scum, and simmer till fish stock reduces to about 1 C. liquid. Discard bones, strain, and add 1 C. heavy cream. Simmer and reduce till thick enough to coat back of spoon.
  • If using capers in vinegar, drain and rinse lightly reserve. If using capers in olive oil, drain but reserve oil to thin paste after mixing. 
  • Place all other ingredients besides oil in a mortar and grind up, or use bowl and hand mixer. If necessary, substitute piment d'Espelette with 1⁄2 T. paprika and a pinch of ground cayenne pepper. 
  • Stir in olive oil to make a paste. Pat dry the whole monkfish filets and cover all sides of fish with seasonings.
  • Place in baking dish and bake in 160 C/ 350 F oven for 15-­25 minutes, till white liquid coagulates at bottom of fish and filets are firm to the touch in center. (25 minutes for thicker filets.) 
  • Remove, add cooking liquids left in pan to cream sauce, heat, season and mix well with hand mixer. Sprinkle fish evenly with salt, and slice into fine medallions with very sharp knife after cooling 3-­4 minutes. 
  • Optionally, dress a few greens like arugula or watercress with a bit of olive oil as a garnish.

Wine Suggestion:

Medium dry whites: Sancerre, Pouilly-fumé, Chablis, Muscadet sur lie, Picpoul de Pinet or dry Rosés from the Mediterranean

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