An early Christmas gift, a crate of fresh California oranges, arrived just before the winter freeze set in. Shipped from my aunt in Pasadena, these bright orange orbs of Vitamin C are a welcome treat. We are enjoying them with abandon; as fresh juice, in smoothies, and slices for the lunch box, grated over sautéed greens, wedges in salads with poppy seed dressing and now as a sauce for grilled Maine halibut.
In addition to my hoard of beautiful oranges, the inspiration for this recipe comes from a 1999 Gourmet magazine. The original dish was quite tropical, and featured Mahi Mahi over a mound of crushed potatoes. The photo was so stunning that I had to go cook.
As a true Mainer, I love anything with potatoes. Mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes, hash browns, and potato cakes: you make them, I’ll eat them. In Crushed Potatoes, I particularly enjoy the subtle allium flavors that come from sautéing the leeks or scallions in oil, and then “crushing” in the cooked potatoes.
After studying the fish recipe, I knew the preparation would also be delicious with any firm-flesh fish besides halibut, like salmon, tuna or shark. Steamed carrots and red pepper slivers along with orange slices complete our “tropical” Maine meal, a wonderful Christmas gift!
Grilled Halibut with Orange Sauce
- 1½ pounds Halibut steaks or fillets
- ½ cup fresh orange juice
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon green curry paste, available in Asian sections of large supermarkets
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon chili pepper flakes
- Sea salt, to taste
- To prepare the orange sauce, whisk together the fresh orange juice, orange zest, green curry paste, lime juice and olive oil. Add the chili pepper flakes and a dash of sea salt. Pour the sauce over the fish and let marinate for 15 – 20 minutes. Heat a well-seasoned grill or grill pan and spray with cooking spray. Grill the fish, basting with the orange sauce, 3 minutes on one side. Turn and grill for about 4 – 5 minutes on the other side, basting with orange sauce.
- 6 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered (about 1 ½ pounds)
- ½ cup chopped scallions or leeks
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- ½ cup finely minced fresh parsley
- sea salt and fresh pepper to taste
- Peel and quarter potatoes. Place in saucepan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil. Lower heat and cook until potatoes are fork tender. Remove from heat, drain, and let sit for 5 minutes. Heat the olive oil in a fry pan. Add the chopped leeks or scallions and cook until they start to soften. Add the potatoes, and with a fork, crush the potatoes into the oil. Do not mash. Stir in the fresh parsley and butter, and season to taste with sea salt and fresh pepper. To serve, spoon crushed potatoes into a ½ cup measure and mound on heated plate.