Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Grilled Halibut with grilled red pepper harissa: you need to get this fish on!!

Just so you know, if the recipe appears in the column to the left under the "Recipe" heading, then it is something I am pretty confident you'll like. Believe me there are plenty of things that, to put it kindly, didn't quite make the list. The recipe at the top of the heap right now, and printed below, would most definitely not fall into the "kitchen disappointment" category. In fact both w and I thought it was a spectacular success. I was putzing around home yesterday and playing with my new favorite iPhone app, the free epicurious download, and entered "grilled halibut" into the search. Thankfully this delish dish, which has immediately been added to our regular rotation, was one of the top 3 search results.

I had never made harissa, that pungent North African condiment, before this. I've had it plenty of times, but I don't know if I've ever had it better. The smokiness imparted by the grilled peppers, jalapeno, and garlic was incredible when combined with the cumin, coriander, and olive oil. Traditionally served with couscous, it went unbelievably well with the grilled halibut and would be a fabulous condiment with a grilled steak, veggies, eggs, and any other place your hungry imagination takes you. It is so easy to make that there isn't any excuse not to have a container of this in your fridge. Plus, using grilled lemon halves for their juice to squeeze onto the fish was inspired, the juice slightly smoky with a sweet caramelized flavor. This is absolutely a "wow" dish to serve to guests at your next 'que function!

Wine pick: I had a leftover bottle of 2007 J. Christopher Pinot Noir we shared that worked surprisingly well. I also think an ice cold bottle of dry rosé would be stellar.
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Grilled Halibut with Grilled Red Pepper Harissa
from Bon Appétit

yield: Makes 4 servings

1 red jalapeño chile
1 garlic clove, peeled
4 5- to 6-ounce halibut or mahi-mahi fillets
2 large red bell peppers, quartered lengthwise, seeded
Olive oil for brushing plus 1/4 cup
2 teaspoons ground cumin, divided
2 teaspoons ground coriander, divided
1 lemon, halved
when the peppers are almost done, the fish goes on


Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Thread jalapeño and garlic clove onto metal skewer. Brush jalapeño, garlic, fish, and red bell peppers with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sprinkle fish with 1/2 teaspoon cumin and 1/2 teaspoon coriander. Grill fish, bell peppers,jalapeño, and garlic until vegetables are tender and charred and fish is just cooked through, about 4 minutes per side for fish and 6 minutes per side for vegetables. Grill lemon, cut side down, until charred, about 3 minutes. Transfer fish to plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

Peel charred parts of skin from bell peppers and cut stem from jalapeño, and transfer to blender, discarding peel and stem. Add garlic clove, remaining 1/4 cup oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin, and 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander to blender. Process until coarse puree forms. Season sauce generously to taste with salt and pepper.

Place 1 fish fillet on each of 4 plates. Squeeze grilled lemon over. Spoon sauce over fish and serve.

bb’s note:: The time it takes to grill the veggies will vary with the heat of your fire. Mine took much less time, maybe 5 or 6 minutes per side. If the seem to getting too done too quickly, move them slightly off the direct heat.
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one year ago today @ E.D.T.: hunting wild mushrooms at the farmer's market!


Alisa@Foodista said...

This is delicious!It's my first visit to your blog and I'm lovin it! (you had me at the total eclipse of the heart video)Hope you wont mind,I'd love to guide our readers to your site, just add this foodista widget to this post and it's all set to go, Thanks!

Fearless Kitchen said...

This looks really delicious. I'm a big fan of harissa, and it goes so well with fish!

bb said...

Alisa....thanks for your kind words. I'll be happy to add the link, too.

fearless...you have to make this. So good and so easy!

Unknown said...

I made this tonight (along with the grown up 'tartar sauce' Forgot how simple Harrisa can be!
What fun, our Halibut was amazing, thanks for the sauces!! Your blog is great, thanks for sharing!

bb said...

Nicole....so happy it worked for you...although I can't imagine who wouldn't like it! And thanks for your kind words regarding the blog, too!