We eat a lot of seafood around here. Usually, it’s one of the staples I always keep on hand; canned tuna or sardines, frozen salmon, wild caught shrimp, maybe some flounder…
But every once in a while I feel like mixing it up, and by that I mean I can’t turn down a coupon. I’m all over a good deal, especially on healthy food, and that is how this halibut with olive tabbouleh and duck fat potatoes arrived on our table.
My mind is constantly searching for new methods to use up absolutely everything that finds its way into my refrigerator.
For the record, I’m not suggesting that it’s normal to think about the contents of your fridge all the time. I’m just using this opportunity to admit that fact to you.
When I brought home this gorgeous hunk of halibut, I knew right away that it would make the perfect landing pad for a bright, summery tabbouleh that I happened to have all the ingredients for already. (love when those kind of culinary coincidences happen)
Halibut is a mild fish, with an almost-sweet flavor that can really stand up well to something bold. It’s not at all fishy, in case that is a characteristic that you regularly avoid in, err, fish.
Either way, it’s good stuff, but since it’s a little pricey keep your eye out for when it goes on special.
If you’ve never had the pleasure of experiencing tabbouleh, it’s a Middle Eastern salad made of parsley, tomatoes, onions, lemon juice, and bulgar wheat. I added some black olives to my version because I love a good briny bite, and I left out the bulgar since I already had big plans for some tiny potatoes.
The olive tabbouleh is perfect to make ahead of time because the flavors really develop after they’ve snuggled up for a while. It’s also a great way to use up a bunch of parsley that you have sitting in your fridge, just in case you too are plagued by the same use-it-or-lose-it mentality that I am.
And for any of you out there that thought parsley was just a garnish, this is a good gateway recipe for you to be convinced otherwise. Don’t doubt the capabilities of parsley— it’s good for more than it’s great looks, as a matter of fact.
If you can fight cancer, boost the immune system, and anti-oxidize while looking fresh and beautiful all the while, you deserve more than just a garnishable mention.
Give parsley the full feature, already.
It’s deserving. Trust me.
And while they may sit humbly next to the main attraction they are intended to support, don’t gloss over the duck fat potatoes. These little pee wee potatoes are a favorite of mine, and not just because they’re adorable. Their bite-sized bodies require virtually no prep work, and when you roast them up in some (life changingly delicious) duck fat, their skin gets all crispy and their insides melt into a cloud of potato heaven.
The secret is the duck fat.
And if you think that describing potatoes as heavenly is in anyway an exaggeration, than you’ve obviously never had spuds that were roasted in duck fat.
- 2 lbs halibut, or 4 8 oz fillets
- Olive oil
- salt and pepper
- ¾ cup grape tomato
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- Zest ½ lemon
- 1 small cucumber, or ½ large
- 1 large bunch parsley
- ¼ cup black olives, pitted
- ½ medium red onion
- Salt and pepper
- 2 16 oz bags pee wee potatoes
- 3 tbs duck fat
- Tsp oregano
- salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Heat duck fat in an oven safe pan and add potatoes, oregano, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast for 30 minutes, turning potatoes once or twice in between.
- Halve grape tomatoes and finely chop onion, cucumber, black olives, and parsley. Add to a bowl with lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Mix to combine.
- Remove fish from fridge, and cut into 4 sections. Lay sections skin side down, and begin to cut the fish from the skin using a fillet knife. Hold the skin with your non-cutting hand and run the knife down the length of the fillet until you have completely removed the skin. Repeat with other sections. Season fillets with salt and pepper.
- Add enough olive oil to generously coat the bottom of a stainless steel pan. Bring to high heat. And add halibut fillets, pressing down with a spatula to make sure all of the fish makes contact with the pan. Reduce heat slightly and allow to brown for 4-5 minutes. Flip fish and cook for another few minutes, depending on thickness.
- Divide potatoes between 4 plates. Plate fillets, and serve with tabbouleh.
the flavor of the tabbouleh will benefit greatly if made in advance, preferably overnight. If you can't find halibut, you can substitute with another fish of your choice
Don't let me do all the talking! Let me know what you think in the comments.