25 February 2009

Spice-Poached Halibut with Roasted Red Veggies

I last made this using cod; the recipe is here. This time I thought I'd try adding wine, and so the broth was made of 2 cups of milk and 1 cup white wine. I simmered the broth for half an hour to intensify the flavour of the spices. And I pan-roasted (is that a cooking term?) red peppers and grape tomatoes on the side.

Result: The roasted peppers and tomatoes are amazing. I want to eat these all the time. I can't think of a better side to go with fish. Or chicken. Or beef . . . And the fish: Ok. The halibut itself was good (bought frozen from the butcher shop on Denman). I omitted the Pollo Asado chicken seasoning this time around, but it probably would have added that little extra needed kick. Also, I probably only needed one cup of milk; in any case, it curdled. How can this be prevented? Here is a random paragraph (concerning white wine sauce with mussels) via Google, that at least provides a little insight.

"Make sure the wine is used first while cooking the mussels so that it hits high heat and boils down a bit. Reduce heat to low at the end or turn off and add the 1/2&1/2. It should not curdle or break as long as you don't boil it or leave it on heat too long."

So, round three next time . . . does the milk even make that much of a difference? Maybe I should try it dairy-free. That way I can boil the spices in the broth even longer (the flavour, while nice and subtle, was still a little lacking in intensity for my tastes) without worry of curdling. Or . . . I could add everything but the milk and simmer and reduce, then turn the heat down and gradually stir in the milk. Maybe cream, this time. And less liquid for a creamier broth. Actually, I think the dairy is a more important ingredient than the wine, for this dish. The wine didn't have that intense of an effect (at least not in a 1:2 ratio with the milk).

Also tonight, dessert: an Easter Cream Egg, and the last of the Safeway meringues, which by the way I also spent all of last night eating. For the past two days I have been snacking while watching Rachel Getting Married, and now I automatically connect the movie with those lovely pastel-coloured meringues. Sort of like my own personal drug to help me make it through an overall unpleasant movie about an addict.

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