broiled sea perch, anchovy; cress; roasted purple radish

Sometimes the picture on these posts may be as good as the food, but not always, since my first priority is getting the plate to the table rather than arranging an “I’m ready for my close up, Mr. DeMille” installation. This was one of those good sometimes.

The beautiful purple radishes were almost as key to this meal as the wonderful red sea perch, and I picked both of them up within the first few minutes of my arrival at the Union Square Greenmarket yesterday. I’ve cooked sea perch many times, but this was my first experience with purple Korean radishes (I bought the last 3 roots on the farmer’s table Friday).

  • four red sea perch fillets from Pura Vida Seafood, rinsed, dried, brushed, the skin side and the other side, with 2 tablespoons of olive oil mixed with more than a teaspoon of a combination of chopped rocambole garlic from Keith’s Farm and the white of one thinly-sliced Japanese scallion from Norwich Meadows Farm, seasoned, also on both sides, with sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, placed inside an enameled cast iron pan and broiled skin side up, 4 or 5 inches from the flames, for about 5 minutes, or when the skin had become crisp (and it definitely did this time) and the fish was cooked through, sauced with a bit of olive oil in which 2 salted anchovies from Buon Italia, rinsed and filleted, had been heated over a very low flame for about 4 minutes until the anchovies had fallen apart, kept warm while the fillets were broiled, the perch finished on the plates with micro chervil from Two Guys from Woodbridge, and organic Whole Foods Market lemon wedges served on the side
  • watercress, undressed, from Eataly
  • Korean Bora King purple radishes (they’re purple on the inside as well) from Alewife Farm, unpeeled, trimmed, washed and scrubbed well, cut as thick wedges, tossed in a bowl with a little, olive oil; a pinch of dried golden habanada pepper; a few branches of thyme and winter savory, both from Stokes Farm; sea salt; and freshly-ground black pepper, roasted for 20 to 25 minutes or so, at 375º or 400º inside a medium Pampered Chef unglazed pan, garnished with micro red amaranth from Two Guys from Woodbridge
  • the wine was a French (Bordeaux) white, Chateau Laulerie, Bergerac Blanc, 2016, from Flatiron Wines
  • the music was an early Mozart opera (1767, with a debut in Salzburg; he was 11 at the time), ‘Die Schuldigkeit Des Ersten Gebots’, Ian Page conducting the Classical Opera Company, with  Sophie Bevan, Andrew Kennedy, Sarah Fox, and Allan Clayton