Sunday, May 18, 2014

The Hawthornelets Go Fishing On Saturday And Rosie Makes Cobia Three Ways On Sunday.

 My Boys went fishin' on Saturday.
My boys can fish.
They LOVE fishin'!
They are what you would call, "AVID FISHERMEN."

 The Hawthorne Boys had a wonderful Saturday afternoon.

 And we have COBIA!!

So many thanks to our dear friend, Ian-With-A-Long-I.
And I change the names to protect the guilty.
As always.
The Boys got home late Saturday night, laden with cobia filets,
and we dined on delightful and delicious cobia all day Sunday.

First, I have to tell you something.
I sniffed this fish.
I could smell NOTHING except ocean!
There was absolutely no "fish" smell.
Just as it should be.

Oh... to live where we do!
Mr. Hawthorne and I prepared cobia three different ways today.

Cobia #1
First, I am making cobia en papillote, or cobia in parchment.
Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to hold your fish,
fold in half, and cut a half heart shape out.
Open up into a heart and
place filet along fold in the large part of the heart.

The beauty about this method of cooking - in parchment -
is that the fish is cooked in swirling aromatic steam in a sealed package.
All the flavors of whatever you put in the package
meld and infuse into each other,
 resulting in the whole being more than the sum of its parts.

I call it culinary synergy.

Now, what flavors do I want to put into my little cobia packets?

Caution ...
Stand back while Rosie's mind is at work.
The hamsters are running!
Back off!
Back off!

I placed each cobia filet on the parchment half-heart.
I tucked a fresh bay leaf under the bottom.

  I juiced 1/4 vertical lemon slice and left the remains in,
along with some sliced onions.

 Freshly cracked black pepper, Kosher salt, Old Bay seasoning, 
and a bouquet of fresh basil go into the pack.

 NEVER forget the butter.
Now I'm ready to crimp and seal.

 Starting at the large part of the heart,
crimp and seal your way to the pointed end.

 When you're almost there - at the pointy end- ,
pour in 1/8 cup sherry.
I used sherry since I was out of white wine.

Yes ...  I know!
Who'd a-thunk?
Rosie hangs head in shame.
Bad Rosie!
If you have white wine, I'd add in 1/4 cup.
 Finish crimping and be sure you have a complete seal.
You want to keep all those flavors inside.

I have been accused of stapling my papillotes.

Place sealed packets on rimmed baking sheet
and bake in a 350° oven for 15 - 20 minutes.
Let rest about 3-5 minutes before opening the packages.
Let that steam and those flavors work their magic!

While the cobia baked,
I put together a little green bean dish
which the three Hawthorne men and I all enjoyed.

2 cups green beans
handful of chopped red onion
handful of almonds
2 TB bacon marmalade
crumbled feta, to taste

Bacon marmalade?
I made it to go with my fried pimiento cheese balls.
Here's the recipe:  Bacon marmalade.

 Bring salted water to a boil.
Drop in beans and cook for 2 minutes.
Drain and ...
... immediately plunge into ice water
 to stop the cooking and set the color.

 Heat skillet over medium high heat,
add a tablespoon of butter and a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil -
 Olio Carli for me.

When the butter sizzles,
add in the dried-off beans and cook a minute or so,
then add in the onion and almonds.

Cook another minute.
 Add in the bacon marmalade
and a zesting of lemon, to taste.
Season with Kosher salt, if necessary.
Cook until just al dente.

 Crumble feta and chopped parsley into the bean salad and toss.


 Our fish is ready.

 Carefully unwrap your package,
with your nose right out there,
and welcome the most enticing aromas.

 Oh my.

 Oh my goodness!

Sprinkle some parsley on top.

This is some deliciously sweet fish!
The cobia has been impregnated with all those flavors -
onion, bay leaf, basil, lemon, sherry.
And you must cut a few slices of your homemade baguettes
to sop up every bit of that ambrosial liquid.

Cobia #2
 For the condiment,
I chopped cucumber, red onion, and cilantro.

 Then I added roasted red pepper and black olives.

 Cilantro seeds.
Fresh, raw coriander seeds.
Citrusy with a burst in the bite!

 Two more beautiful cobia filets.

 Youngest Hawthorne cooked this.
And I helped!

The best thing about this day
is that four of us Hawthornes
were in the kitchen and cooking,
being happy, and laughing.
Not quite anything else like that.
I treasure it.
I Miss Daw Haw, though.

Butter and olive oil in hot pan.
Seasoned cobia filets.
Kosher salt, freshly cracked pepper.

 2 1/2 minutes searing first side.
Turn over.

 Oh my.
Give it some more bacon marmalade!
Cover and cook 1 minute.
It's ready.

I loved this little morsel of seared cobia
with the bacon marmalade
and the sweetness and lightness of the cucumber salsa.

Flaky fish.
Perfectly seared.

Cobia #3
 Our last cobia is a beer-batter fried cobia.

Cut the cobia filets into 1 x 2-inch pieces.

Mr. Hawthorne has perfected his batter:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 TB Old Bay seasoning
Enough beer to make a thinner-than-pancake batter.
Mr. Hawthorne says,
"When you dip a fork into it,
you want the batter to drip off,
not stay on the fork."
His next tip is to "DRY THE FISH!"
Last tip:
Have the batter diluted enough
so you can barely see the fish underneath.
If you can't see the fish, the batter is too thick.

Fry at 350° - 375°.
Don't overload the oil with the fish.
Fry until golden brown.
About 2 minutes.
Depends on how many you put in the pan.
Go easy.

Drain on paper towels.

Throw some shredded cabbage and chopped avocado
along with cilantro flowers into the vegetable mix.

 Mr. Hawthorne executed this perfectly.
The batter was ever-so-light
and the fish ever-so-delicate.

Three ways on Sunday.

I am one Happy Woman!

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