Friday, March 19, 2010

Cod Basquaise

Sounds sophisticated, doesn't it? It's pretty much cod with red pepper jam. I saw an episode of Avec Eric (Eric Ripert's public television show) where he made this dish at the end of the show. It wasn't a "chop one tablespoon of garlic and cook for 3 minutes" kind of demonstration, but more of a "watch me throw this meal together and then enjoy it with a glass of red wine". I found the written recipe online after I already made it by trying to just copy what he did, but it actually looks a bit different. If you want to watch him make it, click here and skip to about 16 and a half minutes in. Without further adieu, my adaptation of Eric Ripert's Cod Basquaise. Or as Eric says it, codfeeeesh.

1/2 white onion
extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic
about 7 sprigs of thyme
1 slice prosciutto
1 red bell pepper
about 1/4 cup red wine
3/4 pound cod fillets
canola oil
salt and pepper

Chop up the onion into a small/medium dice, and cut the red pepper into the same size pieces. Slice up two of the garlic cloves into thin slices. In a medium saucepan heat a few tablespoons of olive oil (more than to just cover the bottom of the pot) and add the onions, add some salt, then let cook for a few minutes until soft. Add the garlic and leaves from 2 sprigs of thyme and let cook for another few minutes. Chop the prosciutto into small pieces and add to the pan. After a few minutes add the red pepper. Let all the ingredients cook together until "melty". Add the red wine and let the wine come to a gentle boil, and let it reduce.

Heat a medium skillet until very hot. Cut two garlic cloves in half. Season the cod with salt and pepper on both sides, and coat one side of the fish with canola oil. Put the fish oil side down into the pan, and place thyme sprigs on top of the fish and the garlic next to or between the fillets. Cook until the fish achieves a nice crust and take the thyme off, then flip over to finish the other side and put the thyme back on top. Serve on top of the red pepper mixture, and drizzle just a little olive oil over the fish.

I think everything turned out really well. I don't know if I got the red pepper jam "melty" enough but it was really good. The prosciutto gives it a nice salty flavor without having to add a ton of salt. And next time I think I would just add the canola oil straight to the pan because the fish was sticking a bit so it was hard to get that crust on it. All in all it was great...not exactly like Eric Ripert's dish, but I guess his is allowed to be better since he has three Michelin stars.

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