Fireworks Honey Lavender Sea Salt Seared Halibut
This is a go to recipe for me for special events whether it be friends or family visiting or birthdays and celebrations. I learned how to make this halibut while living in a studio condo at the Pike Place Public Market in Seattle. Fresh fish were in abundance and my friend and land lord at the time taught me this technique from his time at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris.
I now live in Colorado where fresh fish are not in abundance, but I have a few quick tips that can help you succeed in cooking this delicious flaky fish.
First, buy it the day you are going to cook it. Fish, like most foods you cook, lose a huge percentage of water in the process of getting them home and on the table. You want to preserve as much moisture in the fish as possible.
Second, always rinse it in cold water. Adding a bit of moisture back can't hurt it right? It'll help rinse of some of the odor and bacteria away.
Third, adjust your cooking times. Fish cooks ridiculously fast in most cases. Nothing worse than over done fish. Like any meat, it will continue cooking once its off the stove so be sure to check early and often for doneness.
Searing a delicate fish seems a lofty proposition I know. But you must trust me, it can and should be done. You will need some helpful tools to get started: 10 inch cast iron skillet, oven mitts, hot pad, large metal fish spatula for flipping, and a splatter screen for deflecting hot oil.
Ingredients for 4-6 main dish size servings:
1.5-2 lbs Halibut
3-4 Tbs Fireworks Honey Lavender Sea Salt Butter
2 tbs good olive oil
1-2 tsp Herbs de provence
Flake salt to finish
Turn on oven to 450. Then watch my video on how to cook this fish. It'll help you get an understanding of all the steps involved. Its really not hard once you get going. You just need a little practice flipping the fish in the hot skillet. Be sure to wear sleeves and an apron while you cook this. I burnt my arms pretty bad once from the splattering oil.
1. Get the skillet hot. Add 2 tbs olive oil, then melt 2 tbs Honey, lavender sea salt butter. Don't let it burn. Once its melted, add the fish, skin side down. Sear for 2-4 minutes depending on how big your filet is.
2. Get your fish spatula ready and flip the fish onto the flesh side. Yes, that is right, sear flesh side down for another 2-4 minutes.
3. Flip back on to the skin side. Leave in skillet.
4. Put it in the hot oven and cook for another 5-7 minutes depending on the size of filet. look for a little brown crispiness on top to tell if its done. Don't over cook. It should still look fresh when its finished. And keeping it in the skillet will help it keep cooking once you take it out of the oven.
5. Transfer to a warmed serving platter and spread the remaining finishing butter on top of fish. Serve Immediately.
Wine pairing: With this fish I love a crisp, pertinent white like a Sauvignon blanc or sancerre.