If, like me, you’ve spent the lazy days of summer being just a tad overindulgent, perhaps you’ve had one too many lobster rolls, say three in one week, and you’ve been strutting around with reckless abandon thinking all that weed pulling would keep off the summer pounds, you may be feeling the need, also like me, to practice a little dietary restraint.
Evidence of overindulgence duly noted. I was in Rhode Island. Can you blame me?
It’s times like these that bring me around to some sort of grilled fish and vegetable situation. A perfect recipe for the end of summer bounty of delicious and fresh produce. It’s my version of late summer redemption.
Any firm white fish will do, even Lake Superior Whitefish, if you hail from the “mitten” like I do. I used Rockfish since it was on sale at Whole Foods. I couldn’t find the recommended Mahi Mahi from the original recipe, and even considered substituting shrimp, which now come to think of it, would have been lovely. No matter, the sauce, and the tomatoes if it’s August, are the star. What a refreshingly simple and tasty way to balance out those lobster rolls. And that Blueberry Coffee Cake (ahem).
Pan Seared Rockfish with Green Gazpacho Sauce
(serves 4) Adapted from Bon Appétit, September 2009
For the Gazpacho
- 2 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 2 serrano chiles (or one jalapeño), seeded and chopped
- 4 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. champagne vinegar
- salt and pepper
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse a few times until mixture is finely chopped. Stir, taste and if needed, add more vinegar and salt. Set aside.
For the fish
- 2 lbs. firm white fish (such as rockfish, halibut or mahi mahi), cut into four filets
- 2 tsp. cumin
- salt and pepper
- 1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
- a handful farmers market cherry tomatoes, cut in half
Heat a sauté pan over medium-high flame and add the olive oil. Start with one tablespoon and add more if necessary. Dry the fish and season on both sides with the cumin, salt and pepper (I usually season the second side once the fish is in the pan).
Sear for 4-5 minutes (or less depending on the thickness of your filets) on each side, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.
Divide the Gazpacho among 4 plates, top with the seared fish and the halved tomatoes. Add a squeeze of lemon and serve with crusty bread, unless you’re redeeming yourself. In which case, serve as is.
At least those lobster rolls came with a view of Block Island Sound. Totally worth it.