While I am working on my Three Meals: Cape Cod post, I figured I would share this New England inspired recipe. (Also check out my first Three Meals post: New Orleans) While in Falmouth Massachusetts, inside a zany hardware store, I realized I could buy a cooler and bring oceanic things from the Cape home. I asked Michelle (my host and little sis) if there was a good fishmonger around, she said yes. And with wide bright eyes and cooler in hand – I headed to The Clam Man. I think fish and other assorted water foods (not just sea but river and lake) are my favorite kinds of foods, for the record. I love tasting the ocean or the river or the lake.
I asked the man working what was fresh caught and local. With a very thick expected Massachusetts accent, I was told (without the use of the letter “r”) that the squid, flounder, and scallops met my criteria. I opted for four wild flounder filets that had been recently caught near Chatham. I also bought a coil of Linguica (Portuguese pork sausage, smoky & garlicky) from the fridge. Michelle helped me divide the filets and wrap them individually in parchment paper, get them in the cooler with some ice, and prepare them for transport. When I got home, with the taste of New England still stuck on my tongue, I decided to make dinner. Here is what I did.
Wild Flounder with Allagash Mushrooms & Kale
1 Flounder Filet
Extra virgin olive oil
4 inch hunk of Linguica (You can use Andouille or Kielbasa)
One yellow onion chopped
One cup of wild mushrooms chopped
One and a half cups of kale
Half a cup (or so) Belgian wheat beer or White Wine
1. Take the sausage and cut it into rounds that are no more than one inch thick. Heat a little oil in a skillet and brown the sausage. Once the sausage has been heated thoroughly (165) and has developed a beautiful crust, remove it and keep it in a bowl away from the cat.
4. Once the onions are soft and smell like fried onions, throw the chopped mushrooms in there. Make sure to add a little salt and twists of the pepper grinder. Stir and let the mushrooms cook for a few minutes. Once they are soft, add the beer (or wine). I used Allagash White. Allagash is a wonderful brewery from Portland Maine. As soon as the beer hits the pan, scrape the bottom and stir for about a minute. Throw the sausage back in, stir. Then, add the kale on top and lid the pot.
5. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Use enough olive oil to coat the skillet well. Using the second largest setting on your pepper grinder, grind some pepper onto the fish filet. Sprinkle some Kosher salt on there too. Once the oil is hot, lay the seasoned side of the filet down onto the skillet. Leave the heat on medium high and do not touch the fish for three minutes. During those three minutes, salt and pepper the other side of the filet. After three minutes, carefully flip the filet and wait another three minutes. Then it is done. Serve with the mushroom mix.
If you have lemon, hit the cooked fish with some of it. I did not have lemon when I did this and while it was delicious, it was probably better with lemon.
You can dredge the filet in seasoned flour to help with sticking and things. I did not because I did not need to eat any flour yesterday.