Swimming in Mustard: Halibut with Mustard Sauce

mustard sauce for fish whole foods dinner pescatarian

Halibut Swimming in Mustard

A few years back – this is my old-lady saying for the day – I was on a fishing trip in Florida. We might have gone out the night before until really late (old-lady late, like 11 or something) and we may have had some wine. All of this is irrelevent. Regardless, the 6:30am departure from the dock for a day of off-shore, deep sea, dolphin-fish fishing was a bit rough.

But, I grew up on boats and don’t have a tendency toward seasickness. So, really, I was just very tired.

halibut dinner mustard sauce pescatarian vegetarian

We were not hunting Flipper!

We ventured out – way out – like a gillion miles offshore – to hunt down the coveted dolphin-fish – relax, not Flipper, the beloved Dolphin mammal.

The trip out to sea provided me with a much needed onboat nap.

I won’t tell a fisher-gal tale and lie about how many fish we caught. Cuz, we didn’t catch anything for a long, long time. Maybe we caught a handful (OK, two) fish that were too-small to keep…but no more than two.

heminway halibut mustard sauce pescatarian vegetarian fish

Read it

Until the very end of the trip. At hour 5 as we were getting set to pull in the lines and head back to the dock, I hooked a dolphin-fish. The fish was a lively one, indeed. OK, it didn’t give me an ‘Islands In the Stream’ (Hemingay reference, not Kenny Rogers/Dolly Parton, look it up) battle – But, it did give a bit of a fight. When I pulled the fish into the boat, both of us, the fish and I, were exhausted. The boat guys put the dolphin into the fish well and kept it alive as we motored back to the dock.

When we landed, the guys (they’re not called ‘gillies’ or ‘fish mongers’…not sure what they’re called) filleted the fish and put 3lbs of amazingly freshly caught dolphin fish into plastic bags. They directed us to a dock side restaurant where the chef would cook our catch to our specifications. Amazing concept – like living off the land, or the sea in this case.

One of our crew ordered her fish blackened and the other two of us ordered it meuniere. Within :30minutes of catching the fish, a chef was preparing it – just as we wanted it. Very cool…

Yeah, until I realized what had happened. I couldn’t eat it. Not a bite. This amazingly fresh, fish that I, myself, had caught.

And, neither could my Florida fishing pals.

One of them looked at me and said…’What’s wrong with us?’

And with great sadness for the fish I replied…’One minute you’re swimming in the ocean and the next minute, you’re swimming in butter.’

The timing was just too tight.

So, when planning a fish dinner, I highly recommend buying your fish at WholeFoods or a good fish place…Because catching and eating is just too sad.

Halibut With Mustard Sauce (serves 4)

Tiny Kitchen Tips:

  • Prepare the marinade ahead of time as you’ll need the counter space for the rest of your prep work AND it’s good for the flavors to meld together for a bit in the fridge
  • central park fireworks food recipe dinner halibut

    Dinner Entertainment

    If there’s an unexpected fireworks display out your window AND you’ve invited gays to dinner, be prepared to keep the meal warm while the boys marvel at the lights over Central Park

  • Get a tiny whisk – it’s like my fave new thing BECAUSE 1. it’s tiny and fits well in your limited drawer space 2. it’s incredibly useful for whisking together marinades in small bowls

Ingredients:

  • mustard halibut sauce dinner food pescatarian vegetarian

    Mise En Place

    1 1/2 – 1 1/3 lbs of Halibut (for the hell of it) Cut into 4 equally sized fillets. The halibut at WholeFoods was $22.50/lb yesterday, not bad for NYC

  • Sea salt and pepper – for the fish
  • 1 TSP salt for the sauce
  • 1/2 TSP pepper for the sauce
  • 8 ounces of Creme Fraiche – I bought some at WholeFoods or you can make your own
  • 3 TBSP Dijon Mustard
  • 1 TBSP Whole Grain Mustard
  • 2 TBSP Minced Shallots
  • 2 TSP Drained Capers

1. Whisk together with your tiny little baby whisk the two mustards, creme fraiche, shallots, capers and salt / pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least :30mins

mustard halibut marinade dinner vegetarian food

Use your tiny whisk here

mustard sauce for fish recipe food vegetarian pescatarian

MMMMustard Sauce

2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees

3. Line a baking dish with Reynold’s Wrap Pan Lining Paper – expensive, but I love it

pan lining paper spinach balls recipe

Shiny on the bottom, parchment on the top

4. Place the fillets skin side down on the paper and sprinkle with salt and pepper

halibut with mustard sauce pescatarian vegetarian dinner fish

See, my fillets weren’t all the same size. FAIL

5. Cover the fillets generously – more of a slather, really – with the mustardy sauce

halibut recipe dinner mustard sauce

Smothered in Sauce

6. Bake for :15 minutes…until the fish is flaky

7. Plate the fish – preferably on a sea-themed platter and spoon the sauce from the baking dish over the fish. The fish should be swimming in sauce

pescatarian recipe dinner food halibut sauce

Swimming in Mustard Sauce

8. Serve

I like fishing. I do. But, I really don’t need to catch anything and eat it. Maybe this is part of the evolution of man (woman)…We have WholeFoods. We don’t have to live off the land or the sea.

So, I’ll leave the fishing to the fisher-people. And, stick to what I know: I love a fish dish swimming in mustard as long as I didn’t find the fish first swimming in the ocean.

Meatloaf CAN Be Paradise…if not By The Dashboard Lights

tyler florence meatloaf recipe tomato relish

MMMMMMeatloaf

I suffered many cruelties at the hands of my parents in my childhood. Many. Most of the evil came in the form of deprivations they imposed upon me.

le sport sac blue bag meatloaf recipe

The Naughty Girl Accessory

I was not allowed to wear a non-competitive swim suit when all the other girls were starting to sport OP instead of Speedo.

I was not allowed to have a LeSportSac bag in highschool. Not allowed. Why? Because the naughty girls carried such satchels. I mean look how naughty it is!

paradise by the dashboard lights meatloaf recipe

Evil Album

And…in Junior High School when Meatloaf’s Bat Out of Hell album was taking teenagers by storm…I was not allowed to own it. Even though I could purchase the album with my own hard-earned money…I wasn’t allowed.

I wasn’t allowed because of the hit song “Paradise by the Dashboard Lights”. The song includes a ┬ásportscast of a baseball play where the batter is trying to round the bases. I don’t know – Maybe it meant something else?!? But I just liked the song and wanted to own the album. I think that my father was also opposed to the whole ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ title. You know, because of Satan.

Later on, I learned that many people don’t like Meatloaf….the man AND the meal. But, Tyler Florence’s ‘Dad’s Meatloaf with Tomato Relish’ might just change all that.

Mmmmmmmeatloaf ala Tyler Florence (Serves 4-6)

Tiny apartment tips:

  • Recipe calls for whole milk…but, you can use any combination of 1%, 2% and cream – whatever you have in your apt
  • Recipe calls for 3 slices of white bread…but, what will you do with the rest of the loaf? So, I bought a demi loaf of french bread and used the inside of that instead
  • Recipe calls for a combination of Beef and Pork, 1.5lbs and 1lb respectively. BUT, ground beef comes in 1lb and 2lb packages…which means you would have extra and then what? And, I like veal in my meatloaf…so I buy 2.5lbs of Meatloaf mix instead. It’s ok if you have slightly more or slightly less. But I did find 1.25lb packages of the stuff and just bought 2.

Ingredients:

  • 2 TBSP Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion finely diced
  • 2 Garlic Cloves minced
  • 2 Bay Leaves – dried, jarred bay leaves are AOK
  • 2 Red Bell Peppers, cored, seeded and finely diced
  • 3 smallish tomatoes on the vine diced and seeded – or 2 large ones
  • 1/4 Cup fresh Flat-Leaf Parsley chopped
  • 12 oz Tomato Ketchup – the Heinz bottles are 14oz…so just use most of it
  • 1 TBSP Worcestershire Sauce
  • 3 Slices of white bread OR 1 demi loaf of french bread –┬áno crusts and torn by hand.
  • 1/4 Cup whole milk….OR a mix of 2% and heavy cream
  • 2 1/2 lbs of ground meats…I use Meatloaf Mix which includes beef, pork and veal
  • 2 Eggs
  • Leaves from 2 Fresh Thyme sprigs – I have frozen sprigs in the freezer at all times
  • 4 Slices of Bacon
  • Salt an Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

1. In a large skillet, heat 2 TBSP of olive oil over medium heat

2. Add the bay leaves, onion and garlic and saute until fragrant and beginning to soften – about :04 minutes

meatloaf recipe food dinner tyler florence

Saute Onions, Garlic and Bay Leaves

3. Add in the red peppers and saute stirring for about :03 minutes

meatloaf recipe dinner paradise by the dashboard lights

Add the diced red peppers

4. Add the tomatoes, parsley, ketchup and Worcestershire and stir to combine

meatloaf recipe dinner tyler florence bat out of hell

Sauteing the Sauce

5. Add salt and pepper to taste – I just grind some pepper over the mix and throw some sea salt in…like a teaspoon or so.

6. Bring the mixture to a simmer and simmer for :05 minutes to combine all flavors

meatloaf recipe dinner food beef tyler florence

It loosens up as it simmers

7. Remove from the heat…And this is V IMPORTANT: Let cool….

Seriously….let it stand for at least :10mins. Remove the bay leaves at this point.

8. While that’s going on…Tear the bread into pieces and drop into a small bowl – cover with 1/2 cup of milk/cream combo

meatloaf recipe tyler florence paradise by the dashboard lights

Bread soaking in the milk…mmmmm

9. Crack the eggs into a small bowl or glass and gently beat them

10. In a large mixing bowl, combine the meatloaf mix with 1 1/2 cups of the cooled tomato relish, the eggs and thyme leaves

meatloaf recipe food dinner meatloaf mix

Because 3 Meats are Better than 2

meatloaf recipe tyler florence dinner

Add the COOLED relish, eggs and thyme

11. Squeeze the excess milk/cream from the bread pieces and add the bread to the meatloaf mix

12. Using your hands, mix the meatloaf

dinner recipe meatloaf tyler florence

Don’t over mix…just combine well

13. Line a rimmed cookie sheet with Reynold’s Wrap Pan lining paper

pan lining paper spinach balls recipe

Shiny on the bottom, parchment on the top

14. Form the meat mixture into a loaf – about 9 inches x 4 inches

dinner meatloaf recipe tyler florence

Free-Form Meatloaf

15. Coat the top of the top of the meatloaf with about 1/2 cup of the relish

dinner meatloaf recipe tyler florence

Relish Coating: The Magic of Moist Meatloaf

16. Cover the relish coated loaf with 4 strips of bacon

dinner meatloaf tyler florence bat out of hell

Because Bacon seals in the moisture and makes everything better

17. Bake for 1 1/2 hours – the bacon will be crispy and the meatloaf will be firm

18. Take the meatloaf out of the oven and let it stand for about :10 minutes before slicing

tyler florence meatloaf recipe tomato relish

MMMMMMeatloaf

OK…so Tyler Florence might not change anyone’s opinion of the singer, Meatloaf. And, I may never be able to convince anyone that Paradise by the Dashboard Lights is really a love story – although Meatloaf does promise to love the girl in the song ‘until the end of time’ and all. But, don’t deprive yourself of the magic of meatloaf. Because Tyler Florence’s meatloaf IS paradise and may just change your meatloaf hating mind.