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Seared Fish with black eyed peas, vegetables, and micro greens

Matthew Ignacio
A healthy and easy fish recipe for any occasion. This fish recipe covers how to pan sear fish, cook a decadent bean stew, and balance those flavors with a lively salad of micro greens.
Prep Time 10 hrs
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 People

Equipment

  • Small Pot
  • Large Saute Pan

Ingredients
  

Black Eyed Peas

  • 1 Pound Black Eyed Peas Dried.
  • 5 Each Garlic Cloves Roughly Chopped.
  • 1 Each Onion, Yellow Roughly Chopped.
  • 1 Each Fennel Diced.
  • 4 Tbsp Butter Cold.
  • 2 Tbsp Sherry Vinegar
  • 1 Bunch Parsley Roughly Chopped.
  • To Taste Salt
  • To Taste Black Pepper
  • To Taste Lemon Juice

Micro Green Salad

  • As Needed Micro Greens Assorted/Mixed.
  • 2 Handfuls Red Frill Mustard Greens
  • 1 Handful Green Pea Shoots
  • 1 Cup Cauliflower, Roasted Any color of cauliflower is fine!
  • 2 Each Radishes, Shaved Thin Any type of radishes! I used purple ninja radishes.
  • 1 Each Parsnip This will be used for parsnip chips.
  • As Needed Canola Oil Rice bran, grape seed, vegetable oil is fine. This is for frying the chips.

Pan Seared Fish

  • 1 Pound Chilean Seabass Cut into 4 equal portions. You can use any white fish. Halibut, tilapia, grouper, seabass, etc.
  • As Needed Canola Oil Rice bran, grape seed, vegetable oil is fine. This is for searing the fish.

Instructions
 

Black Eyed Peas

  • Start by soaking the beans in water for 8 hours. You need enough water to generously cover the beans, approx. 4 inches above the beans in the container.
  • When the beans have softened, drain them and set aside.
  • In your small pot, add a little bit of canola oil, the garlic, the onions, and the fennel. Turn on the heat to medium and sweat down until they become translucent. This technique is called sweating and is very common in making beans, soups, stews, etc.
  • Add the black eyed peas, and cover the peas with water. There should be nearly an inch of water above the black eyed peas. Add the sherry vinegar and some salt. Reduce the heat to low. Cook for 1 1/2 - 2 hours, adding water, splashes of sherry vinegar, and salt as you go. Through this process of tasting the beans, you should be tasting for a creamy bean consistency, with a nice and underwhelming acidity from the sherry vinegar, a mild saltiness. Be careful when adding the sherry vinegar. This is only used to "brighten" up the flavor of the beans.
  • When you bite into the beans and they are creamy and smooth (on the inside), add your butter, parsley, and lemon juice to finish. Stir the cold butter in with the heat off. This is called mounting. This technique is done in french cooking when finishing sauces such as beurre blancs, meat sauces, or beans in this nature.

Parsnip Chips

  • Heat your oil to 350 degrees F in a small pot or saute pan. This should be around medium heat.
  • Shave the skin off of the parsnip chips with a peeler. When the parsnip is completely peeled, use a peeler, mandolin, or if you're feeling adventurous, a chef's knife to cut into paper thin chips, strands, planks, etc.
  • Add your parsnip shavings to the oil and constantly stir. Fry these until they are golden brown. Remove from the oil and place on a paper towel to soak up the excess oil. Season with salt and set aside.

Roasted Cauliflower

  • Cut your cauliflower into florets. This is a term used for broccoli or cauliflower that is around the size of a quarter or half dollar (for those of you old enough to know what a half dollar is).
    Season with salt and pepper and sear in a saute pan or in the oven until they are cooked all the way through. Set aside to cool down.

Micro Green Salad

  • Trim your micro greens if they are still living on a pad. If not, place them in a bowl. Add the red frill mustard greens, pea shoots, parsnip chips, room temperature roasted cauliflower, and freshly shaved, paper thin, radishes. Mix this together with a sprinkle of salt.

Pan Seared Fish

  • For the fish, make sure you have cut the one pound of fish into four equal four ounce portions. Season with salt and set aside.
  • Bring a large saute pan up to heat with the canola oil (You want a pan large enough to place all four pieces of fish in with about 2 inches of space between each piece. If you do not have a pan large enough, just use a smaller pan and do this part in batches). Once the pan starts smoking, remove from the heat. Gently tilt the pan toward you so the oil slowly pools around the handle area of the pan. Place your first piece of fish in the top left corner of the pan. Place the second piece in the top right corner.
  • Return the pan to the heat so you can regain some of the temperature loss. After 10 seconds or so, do the opposite of what you just did. Remove from the heat and tilt the handle of the pan upward, gently. Place the third piece of fish in the bottom left of the pan, and the fourth in the bottom right.
  • ***Chef's Tip***
    When pan searing meats, seafood, vegetables, etc. it is always best to bring the oil to the smoke point before adding your items. This will keep your items from sticking. to the pan.
  • ***Chef's Tip***
    Notice how we remove the pan from the heat to add the items. This is key to do to avoid dangerous flare up and catching your pan on fire. If the pan catches on fire, it destroys the oil and adds a bad taste to your food. When anything is being placed in such a hot and aggressive environment (such as hot oil), the water will evaporate. We know that oil and water do not naturally mix, so as the water evaporates, it brings the oil with it, causing a pop. The oil in the water vapors can catch on fire, transferring the flame to the pan, causing the pan to catch on fire for a brief second or two. Removing the pan off the open flame with reduce the risk of this.
  • Gently press each piece of fish as it is cooking for a couple of seconds. This will remove all of the water on the surface area of the fish so you can have a nice and even sear. Sear on high for the first minute and a half then reduce the heat to medium.
  • When the edges of the fish start to brown and you can see the fish cooked 75% of the way, gently check underneath with a spatula. If the face side of the fish has a nice brown color, it is ready to flip. Flip all fish and turn the heat off. The residual heat from the pan will carry the cooking process the rest of the way. This will also develop a more gentle environment for the fish to finish cooking in, resulting in a more tender and juicy final product.

Plate Up

  • Start by spooning the beans on the right side of your plate or bowl.
  • Place the micro green salad in an arch around the right side.
  • Gently remove the fish from the pan with a spatula and place on top of the beans.
Keyword Beans, Fish, Fish Recipe, healthy recipes, micro greens