Sablefish (Black Cod) with Green Tomato Sauce, Swiss Chard, & Rice Pilaf
By Mary Kastman
In Western Wisconsin, early July is the perfect time for green tomatoes. The cold winter days are quickly forgotten when my local farmers start bringing in these beauties to The Driftless Café--at that moment I know we are officially in the embrace of summer! Similar to a tomatillo, green tomatoes have an amazing “jammy” quality when cooked down with aromatics and a good quality olive oil. Their natural acidity provides a perfect compliment to the buttery texture of Sablefish.
This recipe is a twist on a traditional Egyptian tomato sauce made with toasted garlic and coriander. Sauteed green chard from Keewaydin Farms and caramelized onion rice pilaf round out this dish with some earthy sweetness. It’s amazing to see so many of our farmers come together on this one dish: a true reminder of the labor of love that is our local food system. Good energy=Good Food. Support your local farmers!
- 4 (5 ounce) sablefish (black cod) fillets, skin removed
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, to coat fish for grilling
- Green Tomato Sauce:
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 quart Deep Rooted Farm green tomatoes, diced
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Rice Pilaf:
- 2 yellow onions, diced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup cooked jasmine rice
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Swiss Chard:
- One bunch Keewaydin Farms green chard leaves, stems removed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Salt and pepper, to taste
In a large sauce pot, heat the olive oil for the green tomato sauce. Once oil is hot, add garlic and cook until the garlic is almost toasted--taking caution not to burn! Add green tomatoes and simmer until the tomatoes have broken down--about 30 minutes. Add salt and coriander. The sauce can be made up to two days in advance.
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Begin by caramelizing your onions. Heat the oil in a medium sauté pan and add the diced onion. Continue to cook on low to medium heat until the onions are brown and fragrant--about twenty minutes. If the pan seems too dry, add a little water to continue the process.
As your onions are cooking, prepare the rice. I’m going to let you in on a secret, I cook rice just as I would pasta! Bring 3 quarts of water to a boil and add Jasmine Rice. Stir after 30 seconds and cook for 9 minutes or until rice is tender. Drain well and lay out on a sheet tray or baking pan. Once the rice is cool enough to handle, add the caramelized onions and season with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a medium sauté pan. Add chard and cook until tender, adding a little water to the pan if necessary. Season with salt and lemon juice.
Preheat the grill. Oil and season both sides of the sablefish. Once the grill is hot, place fillets skin side down and cook for approximately five minutes. Flip and continue cooking for an additional three minutes or until fish begins to flake.
Serve the grilled sablefish on top of a small mound of rice pilaf and green chard. Sauce liberally with the green tomatoes. Add Aleppo chili or red pepper flakes for garnish. For an added crunch, sprinkle crushed peanuts on top if desired!
Know Your Cook
A native of Evanston, Illinois Mary Kastman is a graduate of UW Madison and the Madison College Culinary program. During her time in Madison, Mary worked at Restaurant Muramoto and 43 North. In 2011, Mary relocated to Boston and worked under the guidance of Ana Sortun (Oleana, Cambridge), Cassie Piuma (Sarma, Somerville), Cara Chigazola Tobin (Honey Road, Burlington) and brings a love of eastern Mediterranean flavors and a passion for localism. Her travels have included Northern Spain, Turkey and Western Europe. Mary is currently the Executive Chef at The Driftless Cafe in Viroqua, WI. She works daily with the farmers and producers of the region, showcasing their midwest bounty through the lens of the eastern mediterranean.