Mary Beth Clark

Culinary Educator · Consultant · Author
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Striped Bass with Matzoh Topping, Braised Greens

www.marybethclark.com
Passover Striped Bass - Swiss Chard

For an exceptional Passover dish, saute striped bass filet and accent it with crunchy crumbled matzoh topping accented with pine nuts and capers. Serve on a bed of braised seasonal greens for a healthful and elegant dish. For ease, begin making the greens, then the matzoh topping, and finish by cooking the fish so everything is served hot and freshly-cooked.

Prepare this fish recipe for one person or for several hungry guests. Striped bass, snapper, cod, haddock, and blue fish are equally delicious – whatever is freshest and pleases you. For non-Passover meals, use breadcrumbs in place of the matzoh. Black olives, especially dry-cured, make an excellent substitute for the capers – or add both. For the braised greens, follow the seasons by preparing rainbow Swiss chard, spinach, escarole, or dandelion, all are delicious prepared in the braised strascinate-style.


4 servings. Cooking time is 10 to 15 minutes.

Fish:
2 pounds (910 g) fish filets (8 ounces or 225 g per person)
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup (8 ounces or 235 ml) dry white wine

Topping For Fish:
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup (235 ml volume) crushed matzoh
1/2 cup (2.5 ounces or 70 g) pine nuts
Garlic cloves to taste, finely chopped
Capers to taste, rinsed, drained (or chopped pitted olives)
Sea salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Greens Strascinate:
2 large bunches rainbow Swiss Chard, spinach, escarole, or dandelion
Extra-virgin olive oil
Garlic cloves, slightly crushed, to taste
 

1. Fish: Cut into four individual portions, rinse under cold running water, drain, and pat dry. Reserve.

2. Greens: Trim, cut into 2-inch (5-cm) wide strips and rinse well under cold running water. In a large deep pot, bring lightly salted water to a boil, immerse the greens and cook them until barely tender (Swiss chard and escarole = about 2 to 3 minutes; dandelion = about 1 minute; spinach = 30 to 45 seconds). Drain.

Warm the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Saute the drained, boiled greens for 2 minutes or until hot to the touch. Add the garlic, saute for a minute or until fragrant but not burnt. Turn off the heat, remove the garlic. Reserve and keep warm.

3. Topping For Fish: In a large non-stick pan, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the crushed matzoh and pine nuts and saute for about 1 minute. Add the garlic and saute until this mixture turns golden brown and is fragrant. (Note: Crumbled matzoh take several seconds to absorb the heat, and they look like they are not going to brown. Suddenly they turn brown, so watch them carefully and add the garlic while the matzoh is light in color.) Add the capers or chopped olives and stir. Remove from the heat. Reserve.

4. Fish: In a non-stick pan, heat the olive oil until very warm. Place the fish filets down and cook on one side for 2 minutes, turn over and cook on the other side for 1 minute. To de-glaze: Turn the heat to high and pour the white wine directly into the pan, do not pour on top of the fish. The wine combines with caramelized juices creating a light sauce. When it sizzles and the wine reduces to a shiny liquid, turn the heat to medium and continue cooking the fish. Depending on thickness of each filet, cook about 4 to 8 minutes for thoroughly cooked through but remaining moist. Arrange the braised greens on the serving plate, nestle the fish filet on top and spoon some topping over. Enjoy.

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