After a delicious br/lunch at maze this weekend, I just had to try to recreate what I ate. Problem: I had chicken, and Clayton – who washed all the laundry, painted the bathroom, fixed the roof-deck, and basically slaved away for our house while I blew a huge wad on a girl’s trip to NYC – wanted and deserved fish. Cod is, in my opinion, the ocean’s chicken-fish, and luckily Whole Foods had some lovely filets for a lovely price. But the roasted diced root vegetables and the thyme cream was all Gordon Ramsay’s idea (although his was a veloute as opposed to a cream sauce, but I had no white stock to work with…)
2-3 medium carrots
1 lemon (ignore his friend)
1 large sweet potato (or yam)
2 medium onions
10-14 brussel sprouts
Peel all your roots, and trim your brussel sprouts.
Dice the carrots, turnips, parsnips, and sweet potato. Toss into a large ceramic baking dish with your largely diced onion, brussell sprouts, and some salt and pepper. Coat all the veggies well with EVOO, and throw into a 400° oven for at least 40 minutes. Stir occasionally, just to keep all the surfaces moist and to sear in the heat.
Cod. It’s good.
Slice your cod into manageable pieces, and dredge with flour, salt, and pepper.
Heat 2 tablespoons of butter over medium high heat…
… until it’s bubbling hot.
Set your fish into your hot fat, and sear well… for about 5 minutes…
… on each side.
Watercress. Gordon didn’t have this, but I wanted a bit of snap and fresh to offset the rich and rooty. I wash it well, and dress it simply with EVOO, lemon juice, sea salt, and black pepper.
… and heavy cream: the ingredients for my substitution for Gordon’s thyme veloute. Remove the cooked fish from the pan, and set aside in two portions, each on a warmed plate. Scrape any fish stuck to the pan out onto a plate for your husband to pick at, and then melt another tablespoon of butter, deglazing the surface. Add ½ cup of heavy cream and simmer for 3-5 minutes over medium high heat to thicken. Strip the leaves off several twigs of fresh thyme, and dump half of them into the simmering sauce to savor it, reserving the other half for a fresh garnish.
Meanwhile, your veggies should be perfectly cooked. Each bite is easily pierced with a small fork, and the outer leaves of the sprouts should be crisp and caramelized.
Plate your perfectly seared fish fingers like two needles of a compass, and spoon your sweet roasted diced roots over the pivot point like a blanket draped across a sleeper’s hips. Pinch a nosegay of watercress salad into a corner of the plate, and spoon the sweet thickened thyme cream around each savory bite.
Firm but flaky pan-seared cod filets served with diced caramelized root vegetables, and lovingly layered with a buttery thyme cream. Inspired by a my new celebrity crush, but (I dare say) perfected by me. If you’d like to disagree, Gordon, come on over and I’ll make you dinner in MY HAUS (said with gangsta-like conviction)!