Poached cod with velouté, chorizo & crispy onions

Kareem Roberts

Kareem Roberts

30th August 2017

Poached cod with velouté, chorizo & crispy onions

Cod is a fantastically flaky fish that offers the versatility to be paired with a range of delicious flavours - Why not give the Poached cod with velouté, chorizo & crispy onions recipe a try yourself? Growing up on a small island in the Caribbean as the son of a fisherman had its perks. One of them was being able to consume copious amounts of fresh fish, but it was not without the labour of scaling and gutting...and the smell that stayed on you forever. That being said the one smell that brings back the most memories for me is the smell of Fish Tea brewing in the kitchen. Essentially it is a Caribbean boullibasse without the saffron, but the key ingredients in any Caribbean fish soup, besides the fish, would have to to be thyme, garlic, and of course a chilli pepper of some variety. Our soups are very hearty and laden with root vegetables and sometimes pasta but I wanted this dish to be a much ligheter and more vibrant composition. On my island, we make a spinach and cured meat soup called pepperpot and I decided to create a mashup of all things I loved about both soups and this was the resulting offer. It is very light in weight but the fish is perfectly complemented by brief notes of textured chorizo, garlic, and onions. The veloute marries it all together perfectly. I am slapping myself for not including chilli in this recipe...but I am sure I will use it somewhere else sometime soon. ~brokedinner

Ingredients

  • GREEN PEA & BASIL VELOUTÉ
  • 1L chicken or vegetable stock
  • 500g fresh frozen peas
  • 1 onion diced
  • 100g butter
  • Handful of basil leaves (blanched and shocked in ice-water)
  • 2 handfuls of baby spinach leaves (blanched and shocked in ice-water)
  • Salt and white pepper to taste
  • CRISPY ONION & GARLIC BITS
  • 2 White onions finely diced
  • 2 heads of garlic peeled
  • 75g butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • SHALLOW FRIED CHORIZO
  • 150g cooking chorizo diced
  • 50ml olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp tomato puree
  • THYME & BUTTER POACHED COD
  • 4 cod filets
  • 250g butter
  • 6 sprigs of thyme
  • 250ml of water

Method

GREEN PEA & BASIL VELOUTÉ
1. Bring the stock, onions, and butter to a semi rapid boil.
2. Add peas and bring back to a boil before removing from the heat immediately.
3. Blend until smooth and then add the basil and spinach.Blend a little bit more and then pass through a sieve.Season to taste and chill quickly to keep the intense green colour.
Cook’s tip
This application works well for most green vegetable soups. Chilling quickly over ice and adding a bit of spinach goes a long way in terms of aesthetics :)
CRISPY ONION & GARLIC BITS
1. Gently coat a sauté pan with a little bit of oil and bring to medium heat. Add the onions and sauté slowly for 20 minutes.
2. Add the garlic and the butter and a loving dash of salt. The salt will help to draw out the moisture and add texture.
3. Stir frequently for another 45 minutes to an hour or, until everything is golden to dark brown
4. Remove and dry on paper towel. Cover and keep at room temperature
SHALLOW FRIED CHORIZO
1. Begin by bringing a sauté pan to a medium heat.
Add the tomato puree and the oil.
2. ‘Fry’ the purée while whisking frequently for a minute or two. Strain the oil and return to the clean sauté pan.
3. Bring the oil to a medium heat and then add the chorizo. Shallow fry the chorizo for about 7 minutes or less, it should not be burnt or too dry but it should be crisp, airy, and strong flavour. What we really want to do is cook the moisture out of the chorizo without damaging the integrity.
4. Remove corinzio and dry on paper towel. Strain and reserve the oil.
THYME & BUTTER POACHED COD
1. Liberally salt the cod fillets to tighten the flesh, brine, and remove excess moisture. Anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 hours is enough.
2. In a sauce pan add the water, butter, and thyme and bring to semi rapid boil before lowering the heat to a gentle simmer.
3. Wash the cod fillets off and pat dry. Cut some wax paper to fit in the pot with the water and place the cod fillets on top.
4. The water level should be just enough to cover the fish up to the midpoint. Baste continuously with the poaching liquid until the fish is cooked to your desire. A couple to a few minutes is perfect for me. Remove when ready to serve.
TO FINISH-UP
Assemble the dish by dividing the fish among bowls then pouring some of the reheated velouté around it.
Tear some fresh mozzarella and randomly place a few pieces around with a few bits of the chorizo.
Spoon some of the onions and garlic on top then finish with a drizzle of chorizo oil. Garnish with basil and baby spinach.

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