Motivation – After my first intake sessions with “Bebe”, I helped put together a corn salad for her girls’ night. That salad was good! I was thinking about it again when I was shopping for groceries, so I took that as a sign. It was such a gorgeous day here today, that I really wanted to have a light dish. I find myself cooking not only with the seasons, but also with the weather. Rainy days inspire certain food choices, as do windy afternoons, still and sunny days, foggy afternoons, and in other parts of the country, blizzards. The idea of a rich duck sugo with wide hand-cut noodles on a sparklingly brilliant day makes my stomach clench. But, then again, I’m a little bit coo coo, so there you have it.
Corn, cherry tomatoes, and red onion for the ‘salad’, check. Some white fleshed fish sounded right, and there was also a lot of great looking basil, nice tight garlic bulbs, and then I grabbed some of the arugula I like. Loving this. So far I’m thinking ‘Italian’, right. I mean, you are too, I bet. Tomato, basil, onion, corn, fish, arugula, garlic, and ciao, ciao! But my Tower Market threw me a couple of curve balls; really appealing avocados, and these great looking hand made little tortillas. I don’t worry about blurring lines like this. If it tastes good, it stands on it’s own feet. So I fill out my shopping with lemons and limes, like I almost always do and we’re off.
Menu- With fish, I really like to have sauce. If it isn’t a nage, it’s a saucy ragout or a big smear of rouille. As I was walking home, I started putting the dish together in my head. I liked the corn salad from ‘Bebe’, but for me, I like a little chili flake, and maybe some crumbled oregano. Yes. In the ‘Bebe’ salad we tore up basil and tossed it with the salad. For me we’re making a pesto, but I decide to use almonds (I like delicate fish with almonds) not pine nuts, no cheese, and this rosemary infused oil that my housemate made. I also like the idea of an avocado aioli. So far so good –
Results – I made a spice dredge for the fish from fennel, cumin, and coriander seeds, with chili powder, and salt. I also threw some of the arugula into the basil pesto because I wanted to give it a little more bite.
Here’s the final dish. Let’s call it:
Chili Seared White Fish with Avocado Aioli, Almond-Basil Pesto, Summer Corn Salad, and Dope-Ass Tortillas