Monday, August 16, 2010

Spicy Baked Pollack with Garlic-Sautéed Kale

The garlic sautéed kale is modified from the Mustards Grill cookbook that we borrowed from the Kleins. It was great!

The idea with the greens is to wash them and cut off any bitter stems. This recipe would work for mustard greens, chard, or kale as we did here. Anything dark and leafy with a little bit of structure to it. Probably not spinach, as that would get too mush-tastic and fall apart.

Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in a large, broad pan and add 2 cloves of minced fresh garlic. Once the oil starts to bubble slightly, place the greens in the pan, toss, sprinkle with some freshly ground black pepper, and allow to wilt. The greens are going to release some liquid as they cook, but that is AOK because you're going to use that.

When the greens are fully wilted but not mushy, remove from the pan, reserving the cooking liquid. Add a couple of tablespoons of fresh lemon juice and lemon zest. Cook the liquid down until it's thickened and drizzle over the greens.

Pollack is a fish that is pretty important to the New England region (it's an Atlantic fish), so we chose it for North America week. Pretty much any white fish can be prepared this way: we threw some cayenne pepper, black pepper, paprika, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder to taste on the pollack and tossed it in the oven for 15 (@400). Pollack is a white, firm "fishy fish," but making it spicy tones down the fishiness of it a little. Squeezing a few lemons on it won't hurt either.

Ask your fish dude to cut off any skin for you if you don't like it.

We made it quite spicy, so I immediately got a little sweaty and sucked down multiple glasses of water and gargled my beer. (Kidding! Well, about the gargling. Not about the rest.) Geoff, of course, was fine. You should adjust the spice to what you're comfortable with.

Verdict: We both liked it, but be forewarned that pollack is definitely a "fishy" fish. I thought it was too spicy. The garlic-sautéed kale was the breakout star.

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