Pan-fried Saint-Pierre with Vegetables and Rocket Pesto.
4 filets of John Dory with skin on (Saint-Pierre in French, may substitute tilapia, snapper, or any other firm white fish)
2 cups rocket lettuce (arugula)
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1/2 cup parmesan
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 fennel bulbs, coarsely chopped
1 bunch scallions, sliced in half lengthwise
1 artichoke heart (canned)
5 tablespoons shallots, minced
12 baby carrots
1/3 cup of olive oil
4 tablespoons butter
2 cups fresh herb mixture (ex.: sorrel, oregano, tarragon, basil, dill)
2 tablespoons black cumin oil*
* “Black cumin is also known as Nigella sativa, black seeds and kalonji and has been healing maladies of the body for more than 2,000 years.” – Natural News
In a blender mix arugula, pine nuts, parmesan, 1 clove of minced garlic and 1/4 cup of olive oil. Set aside in a cool place or refrigerate.
Roughly cut the fennel into cubes, blanch for a minute or two in boiling water. Remove and sauté in a pan with the onions and a bit of olive oil over low heat to make a compote. Set aside, keep warm.
Cut thin slices of artichoke, marinate with 3 tablespoons of chopped shallots, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Scrub carrots. Leave a half inch of carrot tops, if possible. Blanch, cool and reserve.
When ready to serve, sauté carrots in butter with remaining crushed garlic and chopped shallots.
Brown the fish filets skin side down in a pan with the remaining olive oil. Cover tightly, or finish cooking briefly in a hot oven (180° C/350° F). The top of the flesh should remain slightly translucent.
Serve the filets over the herbs tossed in cumin oil, surrounded by the cool garnishes (pesto and marinated artichoke) and warm vegetables (carrots and fennel-scallion compote).
Adapted from Gilles Le Gallès’ recipe in Le Figaro Madame magazine.