I like halibut cut into 2 cm steaks, seasoned with salt & pepper and fried in olive oil 2.5 min each side. That’s it! Anything else detracts from the fish. You can put sauce over it, e.g. beurre blanc is very good, but this is an extremely fatty fish that in my, not overly humble, opinion does not react well to more involved cooking methods.
Fennel Risotto on the other hand is a dream for cooks that want to indulge in multi step recipes:
- 200 gr. Arborio Rice;
- 1 Leak finely sliced;
- 3 Garlic cloves chopped;
- 1 stalk Celery finely sliced (optional not sure the celery adds much);
- 1 Spring onion finely chopped;
- 1 Medium Fennel;
- 1 litre Vegetable broth;
- 25 gr. butter;
- 50 ml olive oil;
- 100 ml Vermouth;
- Salt & Pepper to taste;
- 75 gr. Grated Parmesan.
- Cut the tops of the fennel and slice finely. Reserve any of the beard like leaves and add to the risotto at the same time as the parmesan. Cut the remaining fennel bulb in two and reserve half for the broth and slice the remainder into fine slices.
- To prepare the broth either dissolve good quality vegetable bullion in hot water or make your own which I generally can not be bothered to do. Add the remaining fennel half and let simmer for at least 20 min to allow the fennel taste to leach into the broth.
- In a very hot heavy bottomed pan heat about 15 ml of olive oil. When the oil is smoking add the sliced fennel and fennel tops and fry stirring occasionally until the fennel starts to caramelise. At this point lower the heat and add the remaining oil and butter and allow to melt before adding the leak, garlic, spring onion, and celery and allowing them to fry until soft.
- Off the heat add the Arborio Rice and turn to coat in the oil and butter mixture. Put back on the heat and start adding the broth a ladleful at a time. The idea is that there should be enough broth to just about cover the rice. Allow the rice to absorb just about all the broth before adding more. Repeat until the rice is “al dente”.
- When the rice is al dente add the Vermouth, and allow it to be absorbed before mixing in the parmesan. Season and serve immediately.