I hope you enjoy the food!!!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Ocean Trout with Minted Broad Bean Salad, Basil Fried Tomato and Couscous

I remember the very first time I made this dish.  It was a long time ago, we had just headed out of "babydom" and I made a "date night" for us - set a little table - just the two of us in front of the fire.  Ahh romance!  Maybe it was the romance of no "babies" around while we ate, or maybe it was the fire - but that meal seemed to have so much more impact than last night's meal did.  Perhaps I have spoiled Mr. CCC - he now is fed so well that a good meal is the norm - back then I don't think I had the time to devote to making special meals all the time, and when they occurred they were that much more appreciated.

I enjoyed last night's dinner, even if it was ho hum for Mr. CCC.  Any meal that has seafood is a good meal with me.  Yesterday, guided by the lovely Irene at Seafood @ Hornsby I decided to go with a whole Ocean Trout, as opposed to individual pieces of salmon.  The cost savings were quite significant - $25 for the whole fish as opposed to around $40 for individual pieces of salmon.  What I had Irene do was butterfly the fish and remove the main bone line.  We still had a few small bones, but the majority were gone.  Onto the recipes...

Ocean Trout
Approximate weight 1.2 kg (before cleaning)

Olive oil
3 cloves crushed garlic
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Simply rub the garlic, salt and pepper and olive oil on both sides of the fish.  Barbeque over medium high heat for approximately 4 minutes each side.  How simple is that!!!

Minted Broad Bean Salad
Serves 4

500g pack of frozen broad beans, shelled * (see picture)
3/4 cup shredded fresh mint
3 tbs lemon juice
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 tbs wholegrain honey mustard
salt & freshly ground black pepper

Place the broad beans in a saucepan of salted boiling water, and cook for 5 minutes.  Drain and cool under running cold water.  Remove the skins from the beans.  Combine the beans with the mint, lemon juice, olive oil, mustard and salt & pepper.

Broad beans require quite a lot of work to get to the lovely little green seeds that are inside.  First of all if you are buying them fresh, you will need to remove the seeds from the outer pod.  

Then you need to remove the "skin" layer from the 
seed - you do this by pinching a small slit in the
skin, then gently pushing the green inner seed
out through the hole.

Believe me, it is well worth doing this - it gives 
them an entirely different flavour.

Once you have tasted the finished product you will have forgotten about how long it took you to shell the beans!!!  It was all worth it.

Basil Fried Tomato and Couscous

1 cup couscous
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
150g baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbs olive oil
3 ripe tomatoes, thickly sliced 
1/2 cup shredded basil

Balsamic Glaze * to serve
50g butter

Place the chicken stock in a saucepan, and bring to the boil.  Remove from the heat - add the couscous.  Place the lid on the saucepan, leave for 5 minutes.  After 5 minutes, add the butter, and fluff with a fork.

Press the tomato slices into the shredded basil (both sides).

Heat the oil in a frypan over medium heat.  Cook the tomato for 
3 minutes each side, or until they are golden.

To serve place the spinach leaves on a serving plate.  Top with the couscous.  Top with the tomatoes, then sprinkle with the parmesan cheese and balsamic glaze.

* you will find the balsamic glaze recipe in the condiments section - "Special Balsamic Sauce".

Even though it seems this is quite a difficult (ie many components) meal - it really is very easy - the hardest part is shelling the broad beans.  Once you have the ingredients chopped etc - it is all smooth sailing.  This is a great entertaining dish as you can prepare the broad bean salad and the couscous ahead, then all you have to do is cook the tomatoes and the fish.

Now, back to the romance department - there was a little love in the air last night.......

Guess who - don't sue!!!!

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