Feb. 16, 2012 10:10 am
Updated: Feb. 18, 2012 6:18 pm
Oh, the best laid plans....
I searched for halibut. Fresh wasn't available anywhere and the fish mongers were quoting $30 a pound if it were! I would have paid it.
Frozen was scarce but I finally located some on Valentine’s Day.
At this point, I thought, “Great! I have everything I need!
It’s all coming together!” Hahaha…
Remember, we are at the mercy of the airlines and the airlines are at the mercy of Mother Nature.
With storms moving through the Midwest, flights were delayed and then delayed again.
The original departure time of 11:25 am turned into a departure time of 1:40 pm.
Not horrible, but when you lose two hours in the air, not great either.
With one stop to make after making the pick-up at the airport, I started cooking the meal at 7:45 pm.
I realize now, it was a good thing that I didn’t pick the beef wellington or one of the other elaborate meals I originally pondered.
Here’s the final menu:
Halibut with sour cream/cheddar cheese topping:
For this recipe, I use sharp cheddar cheese, more cayenne than most recipes call for and I pan sear the bottoms of the fish in a cast iron skillet before placing them in an oiled baking dish.
Along with the sour cream and cheddar, I add a touch of melted butter (optional), about half as much mayonnaise as sour cream, a little flour as a binder, lemon juice (maybe a table spoon), and pepper to taste.
I like black and cayenne pepper together. I don’t use salt as the cheese is already salty.
The ingredients are mixed together and placed on top of halibut steaks and then baked at 425ºF for 10 minutes and then 350ºF for 15 minutes.
I didn’t include quantities because I like to play with recipes and encourage you to do the same.
Add or delete at will and let me know what worked and what didn’t work!
The side dish was originally going to be a butter and herb pasta.
I wanted fettuccine but couldn’t find fresh any where! My second choice was bowtie pasta… nope.
I finally settled on linguine. I melted several tablespoons of butter and added thinly sliced garlic to the butter and browned it golden.
Then I added several fresh herbs… go crazy here… I used parsley, basil, marjoram, and thyme.
Once the garlic was browned, I removed it from the heat, added the herbs and poured it over the cooked linguine.
Here’s the pretty part… I spun several strands of the linguine and buttered herbs around a large serving fork and placed three of these rosettes on each plate.
This made for a pretty accompaniment to the halibut.
And finally, since the other two items are a bit beige, if you will, I chose a vegetable.
I wanted to prepare a sunny broccoli salad with bacon and raisins and onions and a sweet mayonnaise dressing but, alas, the clock was ticking.
So, I ran to the store and cheated. I bought a sunny broccoli salad.
In my defense, Byerly’s (a Minnesota high-end grocery store) has some of the best sunny broccoli salad in the land!
Dinner was ready at 8:30 pm. We shared the meal.
He thoroughly enjoyed everything, including the salad that he thought he wouldn’t like.
The only downside to the evening was we skipped dessert due to the late hour.
But that’s okay because we’re eating that tonight! Besides, there are other kinds of dessert.
I guess, in the end, the plan kind of fell apart and the revisions turned out to be better than okay.
Stay tuned… next week is Birthday Surprise!!! Put your thinking caps on... suggestions are welcome.