breaking news

Trump says he's coming to Florida 'very soon'

Fish Fry-Day: a crispy fillet that’s perfect for Lent


There’s a subtle culinary dimension to one of the holiest seasons of the year: Lent, which began Wednesday, loves its fish and seafood dishes.

The Christian tradition of abstaining from meat of warm-blooded animals nudges the meat-eating faithful toward the sea for sustenance. And the possibilities are not simply nourishing – they’re delicious. 

How does one move beyond the basic fried, often bland fillets of Fish Fridays? 

So glad you asked. Here’s a simple, crispy fish that’s not basic at all. The recipe belongs to the chief cook at St. Cecilia in Atlanta. No, it’s not a church – it’s a restaurant. Chef Craig Richards’s recipe focuses on technique – the flavor is achieved in the frying process, not in seasoning the heck out of the fillet. 

Enjoy!  


RECIPE 

Crispy Flounder with Lentils and Blood Orange 

Chef Craig Richards of Atlanta’s St. Cecilia restaurant shared this recipe with the Atlanta Journal Constitution. He notes the recipe also would work well with sole. The trick to a crispy brown crust here is to pat dry the fillets with a paper towel. To prevent sticking, allow the fish to fry on one side until it releases easily, then turn the fillets. 

Serves 4 

Ingredients 

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 
  • 1 cup thinly sliced leeks, white and light green part only 
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped carrot 
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery 
  • 1 1/4 cups dried green lentils 
  • 3 1/2 cups homemade chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth, divided 
  • 4 (6- to 7-ounce) flounder fillets 
  • Salt and pepper 
  • 2 blood oranges, cut in half and cut surface charred 
  • Charred leeks and tarragon sprigs, for garnish 

Make the dish: 

  1. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil in over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add leeks, carrot and celery and sauté until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add lentils and stir 1 minute. Add 2 1/2 cups stock and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until lentils are just tender, stirring occasionally, about 35 minutes. If liquid level gets too low and lentils are still not tender, add remaining stock in 1/4 cup increments until lentil are done. Taste for seasoning and keep warm. 
  2. In a large skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over moderately high heat until it begins to smoke. Pat fillets dry, then carefully slip two fillets into skillet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté, turning once, until golden and just cooked through, about 4 minutes total. Move to a plate and keep warm while sautéing the remaining fillets. 
  3. When ready to serve, divide lentils between warm serving plates and top with fillets. Serve with blood orange halves. 

Nutritional yield per serving: 529 calories (percent of calories from fat, 24), 60 grams protein, 49 grams carbohydrates, 21 grams fiber, 15 grams fat (2 grams saturated), 82 milligrams cholesterol, 204 milligrams sodium.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Food

Need to keep a cheesecake from sticking to the pan? Try this.
Need to keep a cheesecake from sticking to the pan? Try this.

Food writer Tamar Haspel recently joined The Washington Post Food staff to answer questions about all things edible. Here are edited excerpts from that chat. A: First, do you mean he made individual little cakes in the wells of a muffin tin? Was there graham cracker crust on the sides too? Or was it a single pan? In general, sometimes the cake is so...
How to prepare your outdoor grill for its time to shine
How to prepare your outdoor grill for its time to shine

No summer weekend is complete without an outdoor barbecue. But before you fire up the grill this season, you'll want to give it a thorough cleaning and make sure it's safe to use. After all, you don't want a grimy, greasy grill ruining the flavor of your Kobe steaks - or, even worse, a fire hazard in your back yard. Have an electric grill? You're in...
Palm Beach has a taco shop – it’s everything you might expect
Palm Beach has a taco shop – it’s everything you might expect

To the well-toned Palm Beach woman in yoga pants who has paused twice to ogle our hefty meals on the patio of Coyo Taco – yes, you, with the adorable island bike: Have you never seen two ladies on a lunch break sharing eight tacos, a vat of guacamole, a grease-stained bag of tortilla chips and big bowls of refried beans and Mexican corn? ...
Why work when you can procrastibake?
Why work when you can procrastibake?

All procrastibakers do not bake alike. Procrastibaking — the practice of baking something completely unnecessary, with the intention of avoiding “real” work — is a surprisingly common habit that has only recently acquired a name. Medical students, romance writers, freelance web designers: Almost anyone who works at home and...
The plastic straw is losing status as New York’s big sipper
The plastic straw is losing status as New York’s big sipper

Finally, it’s warm enough to walk the streets of New York while nursing an iced coffee, a chilled juice or a cold soda. It’s straw season. But in many quarters, the ubiquitous plastic straw has suddenly become a pariah for the harm it can do to the environment. The United States alone uses and discards millions of plastic straws every day...
More Stories