Once in a while a delightful culinary surprise results from unplanned but necessary experimentation in the kitchen. This recipe grew from one of those occasions.
It started last Saturday when Pura Vida Fisheries, a vendor at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market, ran out of my preferred choice, bluefish, and my plans for grilled lemon-treated fish with sweet corn evaporated. Sea trout made an excellent substitution, and I started thinking about a sauté instead of grilling, and succotash to go with it, using the fresh corn along with lima beans.
However, lima beans are not a household item for us nor are they available at the Market right now. But there was a wonderful abundance of garden fresh vegetables to choose from, and a combination of sweet peppers, fresh corn, candy-sweet onions and zucchini demanded to be enjoyed.
With a bit of daring, I sautéed these vegetables with a dash of hot pepper, then added chicken stock and local Battenkill Valley Creamery half-and-half to make a new variant of succotash. The result was divine. Combining pan seared fish over these creamed vegetables created a light succulent meal that tantalized the senses with sweet, hot, crispy, and creamy all at once.
The dish was a success and definitely worth sharing. Enjoy summer’s bounty!
Ingredients – Fish
3-4 fillets of fresh sea trout *
3 tsp. paprika
Salt and black pepper to taste
2-3 tbsp. vegetable oil
Ingredients – Creamed Vegetables
2 tbsp. butter
½ candy sweet onion, diced *
1 sweet green pepper, diced *
½ sweet red pepper, diced *
1 fresh ear of corn, kernels cut from the cob *
1 small zucchini sliced *
¼ tsp. dried hot red pepper or 1 small hot red pepper diced * (Use less or more depending on desired hotness level.)
Chicken stock or water, about half a cup (Make your own chicken stock from ‘stewing chickens’ offered at the Market.)
½ cup Battenkill Valley Creamery half-and-half *
Directions – Fish
1. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat.
2. Sprinkle paprika, salt and pepper over the flesh side of the fish.
3. Place the fillets flesh side down in the pan and cook until browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the fish and cook until the fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, another 2 minutes. Turn off the skillet and set aside until the vegetables are ready.
4. Remove the fish from the skillet and serve over creamed vegetables.
Directions – Creamed Vegetables
1. Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
2. Add the onion and cook until glistening, about 3 minutes.
3. Add sweet pepper dices and continue to sauté another 4-5 minutes.
4. Stir in corn kernels. After 2 minutes add sliced zucchini and keep sautéing for 3 minutes. Stir in red pepper.
5. Pour in about a half cup of chicken stock or water, and continue stirring. Bring to a simmer and cook until the zucchini is tender.
6. Turn to low; add the half-and-half and stir until sauce has thickened slightly.
7. Add salt and pepper to taste.
8. Immediately plate veggies; put sautéed fish on top; serve and enjoy.
A version of this market recipe appears in this week’s edition of Saratoga Today. Ingredients marked with an asterisk (*) are available at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market.