I had some problem transferring the fillets onto the plates intact this time (although the image may suggest it was more serious than it actually was), but the sauce and the garnish disguised a multitude of irregularities, and the tastiness of the flounder made me forget there had been any difficulty.
I had four purchased flounder fillets at the Greenmarket, and I prepared them along the lines of a David Tanis recipe I had cut out of the New York Times in 2012. I hadn’t used it in some time, but the wild spring garlic I had in the refrigerator suggested a revisit.
Two excellent ‘spring vegetables’ shared the bill Monday night.
- four 4-ounce flounder fillets from P.E. & D.D. Seafood, seasoned with salt and pepper on both sides, coated lightly with flour (I used North Country Farms Stone Ground Whole Wheat Flour), submerged in a shallow bowl containing a whipped mixture of 1/3 cup of milk, one large egg from Millport Dairy, and a pinch of salt, placed inside a large enameled cast iron pan once a generous amount of olive oil began to look wavy, fried until golden, about two minutes for each side, removed, transferred onto two warm plates; the heat below the pan now lower, 3 tablespoons of butter were added and melted, followed by about a quarter cup of mild wild spring garlic from Lani’s Farm, chopped quite small, salt, and freshly-ground Tellicherry pepper, these elements allowed to cook together without browning, for about one minute, then more than one tablespoon of sweet local lemon juice from Fantastic Gardens of Long Island were added and the sauce stirred before it was spooned over the fillets, which were garnished with micro red amaranth from Windfall Farms
- six small Yukon Gold potatoes from Norwich Meadows Farm, boiled in generously-salted water, drained, dried in the pan, cut in half, rolled in olive oil, seasoned with sea salt and freshly-chopped pepper, and scattered with chopped lovage from Two Guys from Woodbridge
- a mix of young overwintered kale and collards from Norwich Meadows Farm, some having to be torn in half (and the stems were tender enough to include in the cooking), washed several times and drained, transferred to a smaller bowl very quickly, in order to retain as much of the water clinging to them as possible, wilted inside a heavy oval enameled cast iron pot in which 2 halved garlic cloves from John D. Madura Farm had first been allowed to sweat in a bit of olive oil, a little crushed dried Sicilian pepperoncino from Buon Italia along with them, the greens finished with a little salt, freshly-ground pepper, a bit of sweet local lemon juice from Fantastic Gardens of Long Island, and a drizzle of olive oil
- the wine was a New Zealand (South Island) white, Frenzy Sauvignon Blanc 2016, from Phillippe Wines
- the music was the 1770 version of Lully’s 1682 opera, ‘Persée’ (3 composers, Antoine Dauvergne, François Rebel and Bernard de Bury, were commissioned to revise the popular, almost 100-year-old work and adapt it to new circumstances, the wedding of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette), performed here in a brand-new recording, Hervé Niquet conducting Le Concert Spirituel