Chilean Sea Bass with Shitake Mushroom Broth

This dish is the kind that, with a little experience, many good home cooks could assemble from scratch, without consulting a recipe. The aromatic triumvirate of garlic, ginger and scallions is matched with soy sauce, rice vinegar and fish sauce. Shiitake mushrooms give substance and flavor, cornstarch thickens and sesame oil adds a taste of toasty richness.

You can spoon the sauce over the poached fish, but it will also work just as well with grilled, pan-seared or broiled fish, or on stir-fried strips of chicken breast, slivers of pork or beef, shrimp or scallops. Steamed rice could help soak up the sauce as well.

SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 ⅓ pounds sea bass or gray sole fillets
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • ½ cup chopped scallions
  • 7 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Vietnamese fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, or snipped chives (Optional)

Ingredient Substitution Guide

DIRECTIONS:

Heat oven to 175 o F. Place chicken stock in a wok or skillet, and bring to a simmer. Cut fish into pieces about 3 inches square, place in stock, and simmer until just cooked, about 5 minutes. Use spatula to transfer to heatproof platter, cover loosely with foil, and place in oven. Drain and strain stock, and reserve. Wipe out pan with a clean paper towel.

Heat peanut oil in pan. Add garlic, ginger and scallions. Sauté briefly, and add mushrooms. Sauté until wilted. Add soy sauce, vinegar and fish sauce. Cook 30 seconds, then add reserved stock. Bring to a simmer. Dissolve cornstarch in 2 tablespoons cold water, and add, stirring. Simmer until sauce has thickened. Add sesame oil.

To serve, transfer fish to a shallow bowl and spoon mushroom sauce over the fish. Gransih with a scattering of with cilantro or chives. Serve hot.

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Grilled PattyPan Squash (Pâtisson Grillés)

Pattypan squash is one of the ancient, oft-forgotten vegetables that fortunately is making a comeback in market stalls and garden plots.

You’ve probably seen them popping up this summer in the farmer’s market or maybe in you local supermarket. And you more than likely passed on them because your have no idea what to do with them.


The pattypan is a variety of summer squash (Cucurbita pepo) notable for its small size, round, slightly flat shallow shape, and scalloped edges They kind of remind you of a small toy spinning top. They are also known as a button squash or scallop squash in the United States. Meanwhile in France, the are known as pâtisson, where the word is derived from a Provençal word for a cake made in a scalloped mould.  However, contrary to appearances, it does not belong to the same variety as winter squash but to that of zucchini . They can be white, yellow, orange, or green, or even variegated in being both white and green or green and yellow. Pattypans have a texture similar to zucchini. And like zucchini they are best when they are picked very young and no longer than 3 to 4 inches in diameter. They are very firm in texture and have a crisp peppery flavor.

Pattypan is a good source of magnesium, niacin, and vitamins A and C. One cup contains approximately 20 to 30 calories and no fat. It is often sliced, baked, or coated and fried until golden brown, or simply boiled.

Here, I adapted a classic French recipe where you can roast and grill them and serve them with a beautiful lemony garlic sauce.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

For the Sauce:
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt, to taste

For the Squash:
2 pounds medium/large pittypan squash
2 pounds large pattypan squash
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1/4 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Directions:
To make the sauce, heat a cast-iron skillet over low heat. Add the olive oil. Add the garlic and fry until lightly golden brown. Stir in the lemon zest and the salt. Remove from heat. Pour the sauce into a pyrex measuring cup and set aside. Using paper towels, wipe the skill clean.

For the Squash:
Using the same cast-iron skillet, heat over high heat. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment.

Alternately, prepare a hot outdoor grill.

Slice the squash 3/4 inch thick and toss in a large bowl with the olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Sear in the hot pan for 1 to 2 minutes on each side, until the surface is lightly browned, and transfer to a sheet pan. Place in the oven and roast for 5 minutes. Using tongs, turn the pieces over and roast for another 5 minutes, until they are sizzling and tender all the way through. Remove from the heat.

If grilling, grill the pieces for about 5 minutes on each side, until they are tender all the way through and beginning to drip and grill marks are visible.

To serve, transfer the squash slices to a platter. Drizzle with the lemon garlic sauce and granish with fresh chopped parsley if desired. Serve hot or warm.

 

 

Notes on Choosing and Storing Pattypan Squash:
Choose your pattypan squash well:

Pattypan squash should be smooth and very firm, and the skin should not have spots.
Smaller pattypan squashes are better than bigger ones, as their flesh is tenderer.
Larger pattypan squashes are great for making stuffed squash.

Properly store your pattypan squash:

In the refrigerator: Store for two to three days in the vegetable drawer, as it will last less long than squashes that are in season in winter (winter squash, red kuri squash, butternut squash, etc.).

In the freezer: Blanch pattypan squash before freezing.

 

Zero Waste Tips:
Don’t throw away the patty pan squash seeds. Roast them in a pan or in the oven with salt or spices. They are delicious as a snack or in a salad.

Leftover squash is also great in salads or chopped up and thrown into frittatas or grain salads, so cook more than you need and enjoy using up the extras.

 

Source:

Pattypan Squash. (2020). Louis Bonduelle Foundation. Date Accessed: August 14, 2021. https://www.fondation-louisbonduelle.org/en/vegetable/pattypan-squash/.

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All photographs and content, excepted where noted, are copyright protected. Please do not use these photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this photograph and all other contents, then we kindly ask that you link back to this site. We are eternally grateful and we appreciate your support of this blog.

Thank you!


Do you love culinary history like I do?

HELLO, LOYAL FOLLOWERS!


It has been a minute since I posted a recipe……..

But good news! I have been hard at work getting my new book ready.


I present to you all, “A CULINARY HISTORY OF THE CHESAPEAKE: Four Centuries of Food and Recipes“.



What is the book about?

The four hundred years since colonization have brought European, African and Asian techniques, ingredients and tastes to the Chesapeake Bay. European colonists and Africans both enslaved and free were influenced by indigenous ingredients and Native American cooking and created uniquely New World foods. The nineteenth century saw the development of industries based on the bounty of the Bay and the rising popularity of oysters, blue crab and turtle soup throughout the greater Mid-Atlantic. Waves of immigrants brought their own cuisines to the mix, and colcannon, brisket, sauerkraut and fish peppers are now found on Chesapeake tables. Local author, scientist and blogger Tangie Holifield weaves together the unique food traditions of the Bay, telling the stories of each culture that has contributed to its bounty.



The book is now available for pre-order at www.amazon.com.

Get your copy today!