Food Talk + Functions
Anatomy of a Dish: Atlantic Halibut

Pan Seared Atlantic Halibut over a Minted Pea Hummus with Tomato-Fennel Sofrito, Radish Salad and Lemon Oil

Deep in the cold waters of the north Atlantic lives one of the world’s largest flatfish, the Atlantic halibut. With a mild flavor, firm texture, and relatively few bones for its imposing size – up to 700 pounds – the halibut is a popular catch that’s both tasty and versatile in the kitchen.

“It’s a pretty meaty white fish. You can grill it, poach it, you can do a lot of things,” says Chef Curtis Shaver.

One thing you should never do, though, is overcook it; that makes for a dry, disappointing dish. Curtis and his team gently pan sear each halibut filet with salt and pepper, then finish it to a good medium in the oven.

Providing a flavorful base for the halibut is a chunky sofrito made with julienned fennel, onions, and halved cherry tomatoes. The vegetables are pan sauteed and left in bite-size pieces for a strongly textured sauce that’s nearly a side dish in its own right.

Meanwhile, the chef who brought you Sandwich Lab has been conducting experiments in another area: hummus. If you thought chickpeas were an essential ingredient, think again. Minted pea hummus boldly combines blanched green peas with tahini, roasted garlic, lemon, mint, and olive oil for a light and lively variation.

Crowning this dish you’ll find a delicate seasonal salad of local radishes from Wayside Produce and Polyface, tossed with fresh local pea shoots from Manakintowne Specialty Growers.

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