Sablefish with Carrots & Lemon-Butter-Caper Sauce
Recipe courtesy of Matt Wright
Recipe courtesy of Matt Wright
Today's recipe comes to us from Matt Wright, who as he says, is “an English bloke” now living in the Pacific Northwest where he pursues his passion to cook, photograph, and write about simple, clean food.
Matt especially loves to prepare beautiful seafood dishes, and you can check them out, along with Matt's other delicious recipes, at his WrightFood blog.
Here's how Matt describes his sablefish recipe, which he demonstrates in a video posted below the recipe.
“Slow roasting of fish is something that I don't see a lot of people doing at home. I have no idea why. This is the absolute perfect technique for oily fish like sablefish (black cod) or salmon. It is also the least labor intensive, and quite frankly the hardest of all fish cookery to screw up.”
“Here I have paired the fish with some fantastic baby carrots I found at the farmers market. When dealing with ingredients as great as these, I like simple preparations... glazing really fits the bill here.”
Matt's tips on glazing vegetables
Cut vegetables to be roughly the same size, so they all cook within the same time
I like to use honey instead of sugar in a glaze. Healthier, and has more dimension
Glazed vegetables can be kept warm for a while over a very low flame.
The idea is that the cooking liquid reduces down to a glaze at the exact point that the veg is cooked through.
Number 4 often doesn't happen. If you find the veg is cooked through before most of the liquid has evaporated, don't worry. Just remove the carrots, keep em warm. Reduce down the liquid, then return the carrots to the pan.
If you find the liquid reduces down before the carrots are cooked, just add more hot water
Dress glazed vegetables with some very finely chopped parsley, and a pinch of salt at the end of cooking.
Matt discusses the sauce
“This is a really great simple sauce with only a handful of ingredients. It works great with most fish, and can be prepared in an instant. The only bugger really is that you don't want it sitting around too long. Thankfully however it takes less than a minute to prepare, and is extremely tasty.
“The idea is that you form an emulsion of butter and lemon juice, into which you have some fried capers and here a little chopped thyme. This gets poured over the fish right before serving.
“There are tales of waiters in restaurants almost running dishes with this sauce to the customers table, because the sauce is really fantastic when it is roasting hot. Frankly I don't like to run at all, but for a good sauce I might just give it a go.”
Slow Roasted Sablefish (black cod), Glazed Baby Carrots & Lemon Butter Caper Sauce
Serves 2—for more people, just multiply the ingredients
2 (4 oz) Sablefish (black cod) portions, skin on, thawed*
Handful of baby carrots
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon honey
Small handful of finely chopped parsley
Ample pinch of finely chopped thyme
Juice of half a lemon
2 tablespoons capers
*Thaw the fish, unopened, overnight, or immerse the unopened packages in cold water for 30 minutes. Allow it to warm up a bit before starting recipe.
Preheat oven to 225 F.
Take the fish out of the fridge, pour some olive oil over it, and let it sit for 15 minutes or so.
Prepare the carrots - trim off anything that looks a bit ropey. Cut them into even sizes if required.
Chop the herbs
Once the oven is up to temperature, and your fish no longer feels really cold, take the fish out of the oil, and place it on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with a little sea salt, and put in the oven for 20 minutes.
Put the carrots in a sauté pan, along with 1 tablespoon of butter, and the honey. Fill with enough water to almost cover the carrots. Get this boiling over a high heat. Reduce to a strong simmer. Stir the carrots from time to time. (Take note of the tips for glazing above - when the liquid has reduced to a syrupy glaze, remove from the heat.
Add the parsley to the carrots, and stir again.
Remove the fish from the oven and cover to keep warm. (The fish is done when it easily falls into large flakes when poked with fork.)
Make the sauce: Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan or sauté pan. When foaming, fry the capers for a few seconds. Squeeze in a little lemon juice. Off the heat whisk in two tablespoons of butter and the chopped thyme.
To serve, divide the carrots between two plates, top the carrots with the roasted fish. Pour over the sauce.