I had the utmost intentions to script an ode for todays dish, which has become a recent favourite of mine, but alas, my latest home improvement project has left me, shall we say, incapable of extensive writing.
If you’ve ever had to paint a ceiling you may imagine what it’s like at the end of the day, but if you had to paint very thin stripes on the ceiling that is an entirely different matter.
It took me nearly two days and a sacrifice of superfine artist brush (hardware ones weren’t cut out for this type of work) to do the job, not exactly what I had in mind when secretly hoping to take up canvas painting again.
I’m not really complaining here, the ceiling now looks splendid and even though it’s likely I won’t be able to lift my hands for a couple of days; when the work is done and you’re drinking a cup of tea in freshly re-made room, there is a fine sense of achievement.
Not really comparable to running a marathon or winning the Olympics, but it feels great to have done everything yourself, and makes for a cosier home.
Back in the world of food, tell me what are your thoughts of the combination fish and vanilla? Good? Bad? Funky?
I didn’t give it much thought, until a few year ago in a restaurant as part of fish tasting platter was a lonely scallop with vanilla hollandaise.
It’s hard to find proper words to describe the taste, it was as if biting into a cloud, creamy, fragrant and light, a revelation in the truest sense.
Ever since, I’ve been trying to not only replicate that divine dish, but to also to come up with variations for quick dinners. Just because it’s the middle of the week is no excuse not to have something special. Right?
My most recent favourite is cod in creamy vanilla sauce and served with cauliflower toasted almonds, and coriander. I’ve tried it with both regular milk and homemade almond one, and both work great, perhaps almond one adds an additional taste note. It’s simple, made in minutes and heavenly.
On a final note, thank you all for the kind wishes, my friend is much better and already went home, where no one will be force feeding her desserts all the time. On the other hand, my freshly painted guest room proved to be so popular, I’m getting new visitors this weekend, hence dessert testing will continue…
Have a lovely weekend!
- 4 pieces cod (about 180 grams each)
- knob of butter
- 1 vanilla pod
- 2 shallots, diced
- 2-3 tablespoons white wine
- ⅓ cup vegetable stock
- 1 cup milk or almond milk
- 1 tablespoon cornflour
- 1 medium cauliflower head
- handful of slithered almonds, toasted
- fresh coriander (cilantro)
- freshly grounded pepper
- To prepare the cauliflower, cut it in uniform pieces and boil or steam until tender, depending on the size of florets it can take between 5-10 minutes. Set aside.
- In a large pan melt the butter, add the shallots and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Split the vanilla bean, scrape the seeds out and add to shallots with the whole pod.
- Add white wine and simmer for 1-2 minutes.
- Finally pour in the stock and milk, bring to simmer gently on low heat stirring frequently. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
- Once simmering, gently slide in the fish and let it cook for 4-5 minutes, depending on the size of your filets. It should flake easily when ready, but there is a fine line between perfectly cooked fish and overcooked one.
- Remove the fish onto the plate.
- Stir in the cornflour into the sauce, bring the heat up and stir all the time till the sauce thickens a little.
- Serve fish with cauliflower, almond flakes and some chopped coriander on top.