Whole Foods always has fish specials on Friday. HG takes advantage. Last week HG bought a thick piece of swordfish for Friday dinner and a pound of good looking Pacific sole for Saturday. Total for finny treats was $21. Not bad. HG had the fish clerk cut the swordfish in four thin horizontal slices. HG dusted the slices with flour and sautéed them quickly in olive oil with plenty of lemon juice. When done, gilded them with capers and melted butter (and more lemon juice).BSK stir fried some asparagus and boiled tiny potatoes. Wonderful meal. Saturday the sole was prepared a la Exquisite Maiko, HG/BSK’s talented chef/daughter-in-law. The sole was steamed over baby bok choy in a mix of white wine (BSK sometimes uses sake), sesame oil, soy sauce and garlic. This was served with Vietnamese rice noodles flavored with sesame oil and Vietnamese fish sauce. Sriracha on the side. El Yummy.
The historic, architecturally unique city of Santa Fe, just a few miles from HG/BSK’s home, is far from any ocean. And, far from any lake. So, HG is puzzled. Why is fish (from Whole Foods or Kaune’s Grocery) so good and so fresh ? HG thought about this as HG gave a pound of never frozen Pacific sole a quick saute in a blazingly hot pan. One of HG’s talents (they are very few) is sauteing fish. These filets (dipped in beaten egg and rolled in Zatarain’s fish fry mix) were superb. Accompanied by spring asparagus dripping golden melted butter, HG/BSK drank a bottle of chilled Muscadet and smiled happily between swallows. And, a few nights before, HG/BSK knocked off a thick, fresh swordfish steak. BSK cut the fish into small chunks and gave them a quick stir fry in olive oil and garlic (fish was seared but the interior was rare). BSK added the swordfish to a puttanesca sauce (black olives, tomatoes, anchovies, capers). Al dente linguine was added to the pan to absorb the sauce. Showered with chopped Italian parsley, this was southern Italian cooking at its best. So, what’s the secret? Are there special jets bringing these good things to The City Different?