Crispy Fish with Semolina Polenta, Broccolini and a Cilantro-Citrus Salad

Total Time:
1 hr 20 min
Prep:
45 min
Cook:
35 min

Yield:
6 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • Semolina Polenta:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup semolina flour
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Broccolini:
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 24 pieces broccolini (see Cook's Note)
  • 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Cilantro-Citrus Salad:
  • 1 cup mandarin orange segments plus 2 tablespoons juice
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh basil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 thin slices red onion
  • 1 bunch cilantro, leaves picked
  • Crispy Fish:
  • Canola or vegetable oil, for frying
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups rice flour
  • 2 cups semolina flour
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 quart whole milk
  • 12 large eggs
  • Six 8-ounce flounder filets
Directions
  • Special equipment: a deep fryer and deep-fry thermometer

  • For the semolina polenta: Combine the heavy cream and chicken broth in a small pot and bring to a boil. Slowly whisk in the semolina, bring the polenta back up to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium. Simmer the polenta, stirring regularly, until thickened, about 20 minutes. Stir in the Parmesan and season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.

  • For the broccolini: Bring 1 gallon water and 2 tablespoons salt to a rolling boil in a large pot. Set up an ice bath for shocking the broccolini after blanching. Blanch the broccolini in batches until crisp-tender, 45 to 60 seconds, and then immediately transfer to the ice bath. Remove the broccolini from the ice bath and dry with a towel. Heat a saute pan over high heat, add the grapeseed oil and saute the broccolini until lightly charred, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and then squeeze the lemon juice over the top.

  • For the cilantro-citrus salad: Add the orange juice, lemon juice, basil and oregano to a blender. Start blending and slowly add the grapeseed and olive oils until emulsified. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Combine the orange segments, red onion and cilantro in a bowl. Add one quarter of the salad dressing and toss to coat. Reserve the remaining salad dressing.

  • For the crispy fish: Fill a deep fryer with canola oil and heat to 350 degrees F. Combine the all-purpose flour, rice flour, semolina, 2 tablespoons salt and 1 tablespoon pepper in a bowl and mix well. Add the milk and eggs to a separate bowl and whisk to combine. Right before serving, dredge each of the flounder filets in the flour mixture, then the egg wash and then back in the flour mixture. Fry the breaded filets until golden brown and cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer the fish to a plate layered with paper towels and sprinkle with some salt and pepper.

  • For plating: Divide the polenta among 6 plates and drag it from one side of the plate to the other. Put some of the broccolini in the center of each plate and top with a piece of fish. Place some of the cilantro-citrus salad next to the fish. Drizzle the remaining salad dressing over the fish and around the plates.

Broccolini is a hybrid of regular broccoli and Chinese kale. It has long, thin stalks topped with small florets. You can also substitute broccoli rabe, or "rapini," in this recipe, but note that it is more bitter than broccolini.


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