COD WITH PARSLEY AND CILANTRO PESTO

THE CLASSIC ITALIAN PESTO IS MADE WITH GARLIC, PINE NUTS, BASIL, AND OLIVE OIL.  BUT THE BASIL ISN'T QUITE THERE YET, SO I SUBSTITUTED ITALIAN PARSLEY AND CILANTRO, WHICH ARE AVAILABLE YEAR ROUND.  I LIKE A LITTLE HEAT IN MY PESTO SO IN ADDITION TO THE GARLIC I ADDED A RED SERRANO CHILI.  ONCE YOU'VE MASTERED THE TECHNIQUE, WHICH IS EASY IF YOU HAVE A FOOD PROCESSOR, YOU CAN CREATE YOUR OWN WITH WHATEVER GREEN HERB SUITS YOUR FANCY.  (IF YOU'RE A PURIST MAKE YOUR PESTO IN A MORTAR AND PESTLE.)  THE FISH IN THIS CASE WAS COD, PAN-COOKED IN BUTTER AND A LITTLE OLIVE OIL, BUT IT IS A LIVELY COMPLEMENT TO SALMON, TUNA OR STRIPED BASS.  IF YOU REALLY WANT TO FEATURE THE PESTO, POACH OR STEAM THE FISH.  

 2 lbs ATLANTIC COD
 1 BUNCH OF FLAT LEAF PARSLEY (ABOUT 3 CUPS)
 1 BUNCH OF CILANTRO (ABOUT 3 CUPS)
 4 GARLIC CLOVES
 4 SCALLIONS
 1 LEMON
 1 RED SERRANO CHILIS
 FRUITY OLIVE OIL

1

PEEL AND TRIM THE GARLIC CLOVES.

TRIM AND PEEL THE SCALLIONS, LEAVING MOST OF THE GREEN.

TRIM OFF THE STEMS FROM THE PARSLEY AND THE CILANTRO.

TRIM THE STEM FROM THE SERRANO CHILI. SLICE LENGTHWISE AND SCRAPE OUT THE SEEDS.

PLACE ALL THE INGREDIENTS IN THE FOOD PROCESSOR.

SQUEEZE IN THE JUICE OF HALF A LEMON.

SALT AND PEPPER.

PULSE THE FOOD PROCESSOR TO ROUGHLY CHOP THE INGREDIENTS.

PULSE IN THE OLIVE OIL IN A THIN STREAM TILL IT BECOMES A THICK LIQUID WITH A ROUGH TEXTURE. TASTE FOR SEASONING. ADD MORE SALT AND/OR LEMON JUICE IF YOU WANT.

FOR THE FISH
2

DRY THE FISH THOROUGHLY WITH PAPER TOWELS. SALT AND PEPPER.

HEAT A SAUTE PAN FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES OVER MEDIUM HIGH HEAT.

ADD A SPLASH OF OLIVE OIL AND 3 TBSPS OF BUTTER.

LAY THE FISH IN THE PAN, SKIN-SIDE DOWN IF IT HAS SKIN. OTHERWISE, IT DOESN'T MATTER WHICH SIDE. SHAKE THE PAN TO KEEP FROM STICKING. COOK FOR ABOUT FIVE MINUTES A SIDE DEPENDING ON THE THICKNESS, BASTING FREQUENTLY. THE FISH IS DONE WHEN A SHARP KNIFE INSERTED IN THE CENTER FEELS WARM WHEN TOUCHED TO YOUR BOTTOM LIP.

REMOVE TO A WARM SERVING PLATE. IF THERE ARE A LOT OF BROWNED BITS IN THE PAN, POUR IN 1/2 CUP OF WATER AND SCRAPE WITH A WOODEN SPOON TILL THE LIQUID HAS ALMOST EVAPORATED. OFF THE HEAT STIR IN A TBSP OF SOFTENED BUTTER. POUR OVER THE FISH.

SERVE WITH STEAMED POTATOES OR RICE WITH THE PESTO ON THE SIDE.

SERVES 4

Ingredients

 2 lbs ATLANTIC COD
 1 BUNCH OF FLAT LEAF PARSLEY (ABOUT 3 CUPS)
 1 BUNCH OF CILANTRO (ABOUT 3 CUPS)
 4 GARLIC CLOVES
 4 SCALLIONS
 1 LEMON
 1 RED SERRANO CHILIS
 FRUITY OLIVE OIL

Directions

1

PEEL AND TRIM THE GARLIC CLOVES.

TRIM AND PEEL THE SCALLIONS, LEAVING MOST OF THE GREEN.

TRIM OFF THE STEMS FROM THE PARSLEY AND THE CILANTRO.

TRIM THE STEM FROM THE SERRANO CHILI. SLICE LENGTHWISE AND SCRAPE OUT THE SEEDS.

PLACE ALL THE INGREDIENTS IN THE FOOD PROCESSOR.

SQUEEZE IN THE JUICE OF HALF A LEMON.

SALT AND PEPPER.

PULSE THE FOOD PROCESSOR TO ROUGHLY CHOP THE INGREDIENTS.

PULSE IN THE OLIVE OIL IN A THIN STREAM TILL IT BECOMES A THICK LIQUID WITH A ROUGH TEXTURE. TASTE FOR SEASONING. ADD MORE SALT AND/OR LEMON JUICE IF YOU WANT.

FOR THE FISH
2

DRY THE FISH THOROUGHLY WITH PAPER TOWELS. SALT AND PEPPER.

HEAT A SAUTE PAN FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES OVER MEDIUM HIGH HEAT.

ADD A SPLASH OF OLIVE OIL AND 3 TBSPS OF BUTTER.

LAY THE FISH IN THE PAN, SKIN-SIDE DOWN IF IT HAS SKIN. OTHERWISE, IT DOESN'T MATTER WHICH SIDE. SHAKE THE PAN TO KEEP FROM STICKING. COOK FOR ABOUT FIVE MINUTES A SIDE DEPENDING ON THE THICKNESS, BASTING FREQUENTLY. THE FISH IS DONE WHEN A SHARP KNIFE INSERTED IN THE CENTER FEELS WARM WHEN TOUCHED TO YOUR BOTTOM LIP.

REMOVE TO A WARM SERVING PLATE. IF THERE ARE A LOT OF BROWNED BITS IN THE PAN, POUR IN 1/2 CUP OF WATER AND SCRAPE WITH A WOODEN SPOON TILL THE LIQUID HAS ALMOST EVAPORATED. OFF THE HEAT STIR IN A TBSP OF SOFTENED BUTTER. POUR OVER THE FISH.

SERVE WITH STEAMED POTATOES OR RICE WITH THE PESTO ON THE SIDE.

SERVES 4

COD WITH PARSLEY AND CILANTRO PESTO
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