- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 ounces hot Italian sausage, chopped or crumbled
- 1/2 cup minced yellow onions
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 small butternut squash (1 to 1 1/2 pounds), peeled, halved, seeds and fibers removed, and diced
- 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 2 large zucchini, ends trimmed
- 8 (3-ounce) medallions halibut, grouper or other firm mild fish, trimmed to measure eachabout 1 1/2 to 2 inches square
- 1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water to make an egg wash
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Pinot Noir Butter Sauce, recipe follows
- Zucchini blossoms, garnish
- Chopped chives, garnish
In a large saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and stir to break up into pieces. Cook until browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft, 3 minutes. Add the squash and cook, stirring, until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the sugar, salt, pepper, and chicken stock, and stir. Cover and cook over medium heat until the squash is tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Uncover, stir, and cook until the liquid is absorbed, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, adjust seasoning, to taste, and cover to keep warm until ready to serve.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Using a mandolin or other slicing machine, cut the zucchini lengthwise into long ribbons, about 1/8-inch thick. On a work surface, overlap 2 long zucchini ribbons to form a cross. In the center of the cross, place 1 halibut medallion and season lightly with salt and pepper. Brush a small amount of egg wash on each zucchini strip and fold alternately over the fish to form a tight package. Lightly salt and pepper. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.
In a large non-stick skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add the fish packages, folded side down, and sear for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the butter, turn the fish and place in the oven until cooked through and tops are golden, 5 minutes. Remove from the oven.
To serve, spoon the squash hash in the center of 4 plates. Top each portion with 2 fish packages and nap with the Pinot Noir Butter Sauce. Garnish each plate with zucchini blossoms and sprinkle with chopped chives. Serve immediately.
Pinot Noir Butter Sauce:
- 2 tablespoons finely minced shallots
- 1/2 cup pinot noir, or other dry red wine
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
In a medium saucepan, combine the shallots, wine and peppercorns and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until reduced in volume by half, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, adding each piece before the previous one has been completely incorporated. Continue until all the butter is incorporated and the sauce coats the back of a spoon, removing the pan from the heat periodically to prevent the sauce from getting too hot and breaking.
Strain into a clean container and use immediately.
Yield: 1 cup