The only thing about this meal that was not familiar was one of the herbs that found its way into it, with some help from Lani’s Farm.
‘Blue licorice‘, is what the little sign read, but it wasn’t blue, and it didn’t look like anything I knew that was associated with one of my favorite flavors. I looked it up right there, while standing in front of its little bucket.
What I learned from a quick scan allowed me to imagine using it in preparing the cod filet I had bought moments before.
And that’s what I did, although I played it safe by including the more conventional parsley in the mix.
- a very fresh cod fillet (19 ounces) from P.E. & D.D. Seafood, divided into 4 portions, 2 larger, 2 smaller (cutting 2 portions of the same size would have been almost a geometric impossibiity, because of the shape of the filet), 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 into which a cup of a combination of chopped Italian parsley from Keith’s Farm and ‘blue licorice’ (agastache rugosa, aka Korean mint or Indian mint) from Lani’s Farm, before being placed in a mix of olive oil and butter (one tablespoon of each) over a medium-high flame, sautéed inside a heavy oval vintage copper pan, turning once, for a total of about 7 or 8 minutes, drizzled with juice from an organic Whole Foods Market lemon and garnished with bronze micro fennel from Two Guys from Woodbridge
- two halved tomatoes (a large yellow heirloom from Eckerton Hill Farm and a smaller red one from Norwich Meadows Farm) seasoned with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, pan-grilled, arranged on the plates, sprinkled with some torn leaves of Gotham Greens Rooftop basil from Whole Foods Market
- some incredibly sweet small white ‘freshly-dug’ new potatoes from Campo Rosso Farm, washed, scrubbing lightly, boiled in well-salted water, drained, dried in the still-warm vintage glass Pyrex pot, rolled in a little olive oil, tossed with slivers of a red scallion from Berried Treasures Farm, seasoned with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, garnished with oregano buds from Norwich Meadows Farm
- the wine, a gift from an artist acquaintance, Ryan Weston Shook, who had designed its label (and that of other wines from the same winemaker), was a California (Monterey County) white, Au Jus, 2015 Monterey County Chardonnay
- the music was Handel’s 1733 masterpiece, the opera seria, ‘Orlando’, René Jacobs leading his B’Rock Baroque Orchestra Ghent, Bejun Mehta in the title role