Chef Josh Berry from Union in Portland shares his recipe for pan seared local cod with an exotic twist. Berry is the Maine Restaurant Association's 2017 Chef of the Year.
Pan Seared Local Cod
Littleneck Clams, Bok-Choy, Chinese Fermented Sausage, Soy Brown Butter
Make sure that you procure the thickest and firmest part of the cod. Once the fish is cooked through it will flake ever so delicately, one of cod’s best features. The familiar flavor of the brown butter is juxtaposed wonderfully by the soy and with the addition of the sausage this dish sings of “enhanced local cuisine”.
4ea 3oz. cod portions, from the thickest part of the fillet
salt and freshly ground
1/8 cup wondra flour
1tbs canola oil
3tbs whole butter, cold and diced
1ea shallot, sliced
1tbs garlic, minced
¼ cup Chinese fermented sausage, sliced thin
3ea heads baby bok-choy, halved and cleaned
8ea littleneck clams, scrubbed, rinsed, patted dry
1/8 cup soy sauce
½ cup water
cilantro and fresh squeezed lemon juice
Heat oven to 350f. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat, add the oil and swirl to evenly coat the bottom of the pan. Season with salt & pepper and dust the fish with the flour. Once the pan is hot, gently place the fish in the hot pan. Drop in the butter and swirl around the fish until brown. Flip over the fish once it is “golden brown” and cook for 1-2 min. Place the fish on a baking pan and place in the oven for 7-10 min until just cooked through.
Once the fish is in the oven add the shallots, garlic, sausage, and clams to the pan of the brown butter. Stir the ingredients until they “get to know each other”. Deglaze with the soy sauce and the water. Cover the pan and cook until the clams are open. Add the bok-choy and cook an additional few min. Taste the broth and adjust seasoning if needed.
To serve divide the ingredients in the pan between two bowls. Top with two pieces of the seared cod, garnish with chopped cilantro and fresh lemon.