… I make lamb fish. (If you didn’t get the reference then you need to watch My Big Fat Greek Wedding ASAP)
In honor of all my favorite Roman Catholics who started the celebration of Lent today I prepared this dish for dinner for Momma Pants and I to enjoy since you know they “don’t eat meat, what you mean you don’t eat meat?!” on Ash Wednesday or any Friday during Lent for that matter. Luckily for my coastal loving self and Momma Pants, fish doesn’t qualify as meat according to the Catechism. So here it goes…
Grilled Sole with Olive Butter and Orzo alongside Brussel Sprouts and Fresh Snaps (Green Beans)
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 1 small shallot (or other onion), peeled
- ~18 oil-cured olives, pitted
- 1 tbsp fresh chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1 stick of room temp butter
- 2 tsp dijon mustard
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Kosher salt
- 6oz orzo or other small pasta
- 4 fillets of wild-caught Sole (1-2 lbs)
To make the Olive Butter place the garlic, shallot/onion, olives, and parsley into a food processor on pulse for a few seconds a few times until everything is evenly chopped. Add the butter and dijon mustard and pulse again for a few seconds a few times. Season with pepper and salt as you see fit. Once you’re done transfer the Olive Butter to a sheet of wax or parchment paper, shape it into a log and then place in the freezer to harden it up a bit. Once you remove it later for the fish you can transfer it to the fridge where it’ll keep for about five days.
The orzo will cook up al dente style nice and quick in some boiling water with some ELOO yes that’s right Extra LIGHT Olive Oil… contrary to Ms. Rachel Ray’s popular belief and almost biblical prophecy ELOO is better for cooking than EVOO. Don’t give your orzo a hot bubble bath for more than 5-6 minutes or you’ll regret it and also not be eating your pasta the true Italian way it was designed to be eaten. Drain the orzo and rinse with hot water.
Season the Sole with some Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, a hint of Old Bay, and a zest of lemon juice. Place these in an appropriately sized “home skilletz” with a drizzle of ELOO to help prevent stickyness. Sear the Sole on both sides over high heat then reduce to simmer and cook on each side for 4-8 minutes depending on your doneness preference.
When the fish is just about finished take your Olive Butter out of the freezer and shave off as much as you see fit (I recommend about a spoonful per fillet). Place the Olive Butter on top of the fillet while its in the skillet, cook an additional 1-2 minutes. Remove everything from the heat and dress your plates accordingly.
I paired this meal with a bottle of 2006 Greg Norman Pinot Noir. A classic Pinot from The Shark that paired excellently with the Sole, as usual most Pinot Noir pairs well with just about any fish. This particular bottle was subtle but had enough body to not disappoint. A soft cherry and jammy start on the palate finished with enough spice, vanilla, and earthy tones to satisfy.
So give this dish a try and when you do don’t forget to include the linen napkins… always kicks the dinner up a notch in the classy department…
Until next time, Cheers!