It had been 2 months since we’d had cod, and almost 2 years since I’d prepared it on top of the stove, which was my choice on this hot day in June.
This dinner was absolutely delicious. The filet was cooked à point, and you can see the pools of its juices inside the crevices. The chard was also cooked to just the right moment, although that’s always much less of a challenge. Everything was super fresh, and neither the fish nor the vegetable recipe asked for much of a fuss, so it was actually pretty easy to get everything right.
- *a very fresh 18-ounce cod fillet from Pura Vida Seafood, divided into 2 portions, which was intended to also make it easier to turn over while cooking (actually, I cut the filet into 2 lengthwise sections this time, which would seem counterintuitive, but they survived intact, and they looked great on the plates), dredged lightly in a seasoned, coarse, stone-ground local flour, from the Blew family of Oak Grove Mills Mills, that I had purchased in the Union Square Greenmarket, then dipped into a mixture of one beaten Americauna chicken egg from Millport Dairy Farm and half of a cup of chopped parsley from John D. Maderna Farms that had been picked the day before, sautéed in a heavy oval vintage copper pan over medium-high heat in a mix of olive oil and butter (one tablespoon of each), turning once, for a total of about 7 or 8 minutes, garnished with some special, very fragrant dill flowers from Windfall Farms, and drizzled with a little juice from a Whole Foods organic lemon
- *the last bunch of rainbow chard on the table at the Greenmarket stand of Alewife Farm today, wilted inside a a large antique high-sided copper pot in a couple tablespoons of Portuguese olive oil, a house brand of Whole Foods Market, in which a sliced section of a spring garlic stem from Berried Treasures had first been heated and softened slightly, seasoned with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, finished with a little lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil
- the wine was a Portuguese (Alentejo) white, Esporao Alandra Branco 2016, from Garnet Wines
- the music was Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s 1688 opera ‘David et Jonathas’, in a performance by Pinchgut Opera
The meal represented a pretty interesting mix of cultures, beginning with the exotic history of the sausage, which is described in this post.
- four fresh links of Louisiana German Coast-style spicy Andouille sausage from Schaller & Weber’s store, pan grilled for a few minutes, turning often until well scored on all sides, served with a bit of ‘Tanzeya‘, a Moroccan-inspired chutney from Ron & Leetal Arazi’s New York Shuk
- a few a few ‘Picasso potatoes‘ from Berried Treasures Farm, boiled with a generous amount of salt until barely cooked through, drained, halved, dried while still inside the medium still-warm vintage Corning Pyrex Flameware blue-glass pot in which they had cooked, tossed with a littleboiled with a generous amount of salt until barely cooked through, drained, halved, dried while still inside the large still-warm vintage Corning Pyrex Flameware blue-glass pot in which they had cooked, tossed with some rich Organic Valley ‘Cultured Pasture Butter’ and sprinkled with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, garnished with dill flowers from Windfall Farms
- one bunch of collard greens from Lani’s Farm, stemmed, washed 3 times, drained, some of the water retained and held aside to be added, if necessary, as the greens cooked, cut roughly and braised gently until softened/wilted inside a large, heavy vintage, high-sided copper pot in which one sliced stem of spring garlic from Berried Treasures Farm had been heated until it also had softened, finished with sea salt, freshly-ground black pepper, and a small drizzle of olive oil
- the wine was a California (Sonoma) red, Tom Shula California Red Blend 2016, from Naked Wines
- the music was the album, ‘Carl Phillip Emanuel Bach: Sei concerti per il cembalo concertato‘, with Andreas Staier conducting the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra
I decided to avoid turning on the oven this time; it’s the medium I use to prepare shrimp using my more usual, and probably favorite, simple recipe. I think the alternative I chose, that involved several pans on top of the range, may have heated up the kitchen and breakfast room more than the oven would have, but it was a pleasant change, and delicious.
- squid prepared mostly according to this recipe of Josē Pizarro, using a pound of cleaned squid from American Seafood Company, one yellow onion from S. & S.O. Produce Farms, red fingerlings from Norwich Meadows Farm, peperoncino Calabresi secchia from Buon Italia, one spring/fresh garlic bulb from Berried Treasures Farm, fresh thyme from Stokes Farm, Columela Rioja 30 Year Reserva sherry vinegar, and flat leaf parsley from John D. Madura Farms
- a mix of red grape tomatoes from Kernan Farms and golden cherry tomatoes from Alex’s Tomato Farm, heated gently in a little olive oil, seasoned with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, with a mix of chopped herbs remaining from a couple of recent meals sprinkled on top
- the wine was an Italian (Sicily) white, Baglio di Grìsi Grillo 2016, from Eataly Vino
- the music was an inspired mix of the song of our resident garden Mockingbird and Ravi Shankar’s 1956 album, ‘Three Ragas’
yes, they look just like strawberries
It was a very satisfying meal, and it would have worked at least as well on a cold day, mostly because of the rye flour and ale barley malts in its origins, and the dark breadcrumbs with which it was finished.
There were radishes.
- between a fourth and a third of a cup of homemade breadcrumbs added to a cast iron skillet in which a tablespoon of olive oil had been heated over a medium flame, toasted, stirring frequently, until golden and crisp, probably only a minute or two, transfer to a small bowl and mixed with a teaspoon of zest from an organic Whole Foods lemon and some (half a teaspoon?) peperoncino Calabresi secchia from Buon Italia, and set aside while preparing the pasta: 8 ounces of Sfoglini Pasta Shop‘s Bronx brewery BxB radiators (“organic semolina flour, organic rye flour, water, Bronx Belgium Pale Ale barley malts (Muntons Maris Otter/Tipple, Wyermann , Castle Chateau Biscuit, Weyermann Caramunich I, Bries Malted Re, Bries Flaked Rye’, according to the package, and I’m like the fact that the mix differs a little from the one indicated on last package I used) cooked inside a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente (usually a challenge with Sfoglini products, probably on account of ingredients beyond what are usually a part of artisanal pasta). drained, reserving 1 cup of pasta cooking liquid, and added to a sauce which began with 6 ounces of beautiful red radishes from Alex’s Tomato Farm in the Chelsea 23rd Street farmers market, their greens removed and set aside, sliced into 1/4″ rounds, sautéed in a tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat inside a large antique copper high-sided pan until they had become tender and browned in spots (about 2 minutes), then removed to a small bowl and another tablespoon of oil added to the pan together with one sliced stem of spring garlic from Berried Treasures Farm, the allium stirred until fragrant, which was basically a matter of seconds, and the radish greens, which had been washed in several changes of water, plus some ‘Italian dandelion from Berried Treasures Farm, both roughly chopped, added to the pan, along with some of the reserved pasta cooking water, stirred until only beginning to wilt, the cooked pasta itself now added and mixed with the greens, stirring, more pasta water added as necessary until the liquid had emulsified, the reserved radishes now returned and mixed in, followed by a half tablespoon or so of juice from an organic Whole Foods Market lemon and some freshly-ground black pepper, the sauced pasta arranged in 2 shallow bowls, and sprinkled with the breadcrumb mixture prepared earlier
- the wine was an Italian (Tuscany) white, San Felice Vermentino Toscana 2017, from Philippe Wines
- the music was Jordi’ Savall’s 1994 album, ‘La Lira D’Esperia: The Medieval Fiddle‘
It’s a great fish. This is also a great treatment for it, and this time I was fairly successful in holding back on the extras, something I admonished myself for in the post describing the last time I used this great ‘found’ recipe.
- *one 17-ounce bluefish from Danielle, of American Seafood Company at Saturday’s Down to Earth Farmers Market on 23rd Street in Chelsea, rinsed, cut into 2 sections, rubbed with olive oil and a little Columela Rioja 30 Year Reserva sherry vinegar, seasoned with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, placed inside a vintage oval tin-lined copper au gratin pan, sprinkled liberally with a very pungent dried Sicilian oregano from Buon Italia and a bit of dried peperoncino Calabresi secchi, also from Buon Italia, covered with thin slices of one small red onion from Norwich Meadows Farm, thin slices of 4 or 5 small, ripe, high-tunnel-grown red tomatoes from Lani’s Farm, some chopped fresh oregano from Phillips Farms, 8 or 9 pitted and halved Kalamata olives, and several thin slices of Whole Foods Market organic lemon, baked at 425º for just 15 minutes, garnished with micro bronze fennel from Two Guys from Woodbridge
- two pairs of conjoined yellow summer squash from Lani’s Farm, cut into 2-cm rounds (‘figure eights’?), sautéed in a little olive oil for a few minutes inside a high-sided heavy tin-lined copper pan, turning once, until well on their way to being caramelized, then part of a length of a shaft of one spring onion from Berried Treasures Farm, cut into one-cm sections, was added to the squash and stirred until softened, the pan removed from the flame, the squash seasoned with sea salt and Freshly-ground black pepper, tossed with chopped spearmint from Keith’s Farm (I neglected to precede the mint with a squeeze of lemon, because I had forgotten, but I deliberately left out the addition of some pitted and halved black olives, because some of those were already engaged with the bluefish
- the wine was a California (Carneros) white, La Tapatia Chardonnay Carneros 2016, from Naked Wines
- the music was the album, ‘La Lira d’Espéria II: Galicia‘, with Jordi Savall, Pedro Estevan, David Mayoral, and Pedro Estevan, performing on, respectively, I believe, the Rebec, the Tenor Fiddle, the Rabab (Rabel Morisco), and various percussion instruments