What a Chef chooses to put on his or her menu is often reflected by the foods or dishes they discover while away from their restaurants.
That, paired with their knowledge of what they believe their patrons might enjoy, often leads to a some very successful pairings.
Not wine and food, not ingredient to ingredient, but the pairing of the customer to the restaurant’s menu selection.
Case in point, is one of Chef Paul’s most beloved fish entrees which, in itself, came about by chance and appears regularly on his menus at Cuisine.
He tells the story like this:
My love of Whole Roasted Spanish Turbot started long ago in a small village in the French Alps.
It was a cold day I remember. We squired in from the cold, into a small café.
Inside I could smell the wood burning from a chimney like oven.
As we walked in I could see a chef placing a whole fish in the wood burning oven.
Within minutes the whole café filled with the glorious smell of fresh roasting turbot. I was sold immediately.
What I love about this dish is the simplicity of it. Not only the preparation or the cooking of it, but the immense flavor of it.
Clean, soft and mesmerizing flavor.
Washed down with a really nice white wine, say Chablis or even a white Bordeaux, its spectacular.
As I now prepared it, just as the fish is done cooking I like to add a layer of salsa verde to the fish, then place back into the oven to “glaze” the fish a bit, just to give an extra layer of flavor to the dish.
We asked Paul if he would be willing to share his recipe with you, and as is in Paul’s generous nature, he agreed.
Of course, as usual, his recipes and instructions are simple.
Whole Roasted Turbot
1 – 3lb. Spanish Turbot
1x recipe Salsa Verde
12 medium size tomatillos
½ cup diced white onion
4 cloves minced garlic
½ cup cilantro leaves and stems chopped
1TBSP. mint leaves chopped
2 jalapeno peppers chopped. Add seeds or more peppers for more heat.
1tsp. tajin chili seasoning
Juice of 2 limes
Salt and pepper to taste
Remove papery husk and rinse the tomatillos well.
Cut tomatillos in half. Place faced down on sheet pan with parchment paper.
Roast until skin browns. About 10 min.
(Above is the before and after roasting of the tomatillos.)
When done, place all ingredients in a blender and pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped and mixed. Taste for seasoning.
Rinse Turbot. Rub with extra virgin olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
Roast in a cast iron pan or sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
Roast until internal temperature of the thickest part of the fish hits 120 degrees. Coat the top of fish with salsa Verde.
Return to oven for 2 minutes.
Serve immediately with a great bottle of Chablis from Burgundy.