This month our challenge was to cook with spirits. Cooking with alcohol is a big part of my cuisine, so this was right in my comfort zone.
My old man provided the spirit, a fantastic Italian Barolo wine. When cooking with wine keep a simple thought in mind...
If you would not drink it, do not cook with it.
Barolo Poached Pacific Cod Lion, Vidalia Onion Compote & Yukon Gold Puree
Pacific Cod is a fantastic, sustainable fish. I purchased the whole fish. Cutting my loins into about 5 ounce portions. The bones were also used in this dish.
Poaching is one of my favorite cooking methods for fish. Poaching affords the cook reasonable control over the cooking temperature and suits the delicate nature of fish flesh.
I keep poaching temperature 160 & 180 F.
For this course, I made a "fish stock" type poaching liquid using Barolo wine instead of water.
- Barolo Wine
- Pacific Cod Bones
- Roasted Garlic
- Star Anise
- Bay Leaf
- Cumin Seed
- Black Peppercorns
- All Spice
Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan. Bring the temperature up to 185 F. Do not allow to boil. Maintain simmer for 1 hour.
Strain the cooking liquid. Return to the heat. Bring up to about 170 F. Add the cod and poach for 7 minutes. No longer than 10 minutes. Do not overcook.
It is imperative to invest in a good quality kitchen Quick Read Thermometer. It is the only way to be accurate.
Once the fish is done, it takes on a lovely deep purple color. However, when the diner cuts into the fish....
The inside is pearl white. Great color contrast.
Vidalia Onion Compote
- Vidalia Onion - Thinly sliced
- Unsalted Butter
- Brown Sugar
- Sea Salt
- Barolo Wine Cooking Liquid
The keys here are temperature, time and patience.
- Combine the onions, thyme & butter
- Cook over low heat for 50 minutes
- Stirring often
- Add brown sugar and sea salt
- Cook for 10 minutes
- Add 2 ounces of the barolo cooking liquid
- Cook until the liquid is reduced.
In the next few days, I will dedicate a post to my Yukon Gold Puree. One of my "death row" meals for sure.
That's it for now...till we exchange a few words again...Peace!