Cookbook Profile

Braised Wreckfish with a Golden Pan Sauce
and Red Pepper-Saffron Aïoli

Serves 4 as a main course

Braised Wreckfish with a Golden Pan Sauce

Braising wreckfish in turmeric and wine creates a golden pan sauce that is beautifully complemented by Red Pepper-Saffron Aïoli. Serve with parsleyed potatoes and green beans or a shaved fennel salad.

1. Roll the fillets of wreckfish in the turmeric mixture until well coated on all sides.

2. In a large, heavy ovenproof saute pan or cast- iron skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Carefully lay the wreckfish fillets in the pan, skin-side up. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, then turn the fillets over, add the onion, and cook for 1 minute, or until the onion is sizzling and beginning to turn brown. Add the white wine and water or stock and simmer gently for about 5 minutes, or until the fish is almost opaque throughout.

3. Transfer the fish to 4 plates. Add the chives or parsley to the juices in the pan and cook to reduce to about 1/2 cup. Taste and adjust the seasoning and spoon Red Pepper-Saffron Aïoli evenly over the fish.


Red Pepper-Saffron Aïoli

Makes 3/4 cup

1. In a small saute pan or skillet over medium heat, toast the saffron threads until they begin to curl, about 1 minute. Using a mortar and pestle, grind the garlic, saffron threads, the 1/4 teaspoon salt, and the cayenne or paprika to a smooth paste. Transfer the mixture to a bowl or a food processor. Add the egg yolk and water and whisk or process until smooth. While constantly whisking or with the machine running, gradually pour in the oils, starting with just a few drops at a time; as the sauce begins to thicken, add the remaining oil in a slow, fine stream. If the aioli becomes too thick, thin with a bit of warm water.

2. Cut the sides off the red pepper and shred the flesh sides on the large holes of a box grater; discard the skin. Drain the red pepper flesh well in a sieve. Whisk the lemon juice, vinegar, and bell pepper into the aïoli and season with salt to taste. It can be stored for several days in a clean jar in the refrigerator.


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This page created August 2007