Short Smoked Escolar with Eggplant Ragout and Tomato Fondue

Menu Part: 
Side Dish
Cuisine Type: 
American
Serves: 
4

The preparation involved in this dish is well worth the effort. This is a dazzling dish with bold flavors and scrumptious aromas.

Ingredients

For the Escolar:
8 (4-oz.) escolar fillets
Teriyaki sauce, as needed

For the Eggplant Ragoût:
1 oz. extra virgin olive oil
8 cloves garlic
1 eggplant, peeled, sliced about 3⁄4-in. thick, soaked in salt water, then rinsed, dried, and cut in 1-in. dice
1 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1⁄2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 red pepper, roasted and peeled, cut in 1-in. dice
4 anchovy fillets, chopped
2 oz. veal jus
Salt and pepper, to taste

For the Tomato Fondue:
2 oz. extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. chopped fresh garlic
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tbsp. chopped basil
4 ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and diced
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste for grilling fish
Fresh basil sprigs, for garnish

Steps

1. Set up a cold smoker or barbecue grill with a tightly fitting lid. Light a few chunks of charcoal and when they are red, cover with hardwood chips that have been soaked for a few minutes. When the wood starts to smoke, cover the smoker and adjust the vents so they are open only slightly. (If using a drum-type smoker, place ice in the drip pan.) When the smoke is thick, brush the escolar fillets with teriyaki and place in the smoker as far away from the flame as possible; smoke 2-3 min. Remove and refrigerate.

2. Prepare Eggplant Ragoût: Heat the olive oil over medium heat and sweat the garlic until light brown and soft. Add the eggplant and half the chopped fresh herbs, lower heat, and stew gently, stirring often, 15-20 min. Add red pepper, anchovy, and veal jus and cook on low heat, 10 min. Stir in remaining herbs and season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.

3. Prepare Tomato Fondue: Heat olive oil and sauté garlic 2 min.; add tomato paste and mash with a spoon, spreading it out in the oil. Add half the basil and all the tomatoes, cooking until warmed through. Stir in remaining basil and season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.

4. For service: Lightly season the escolar fillets with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste, and place on a clean, hot grill; cook about 3 min. per side. Place a spoonful of warm ragout in center of the plate, shingle the escolar fillets on top (2 fillets per serving),
finish with tomato fondue and garnish with basil.

Source: Recipe from Chef Tenney Flynn

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

The menu served at Ottawa General Hospital in Ottawa, Ontario, is headed for an overhaul after its CEO and management team ate a strict hospital food diet for a week and were unhappy with their options. The foodservice department has been fielding patient complaints for years, but decided to take action after facing the issue head on.

“Getting food managers to eat three meals of hospital food a day for a week brought the point home that much of the food being served was bland, institutional and not what people would normally eat,” Director of Food Services Kevin Peters told Ottawa...

Industry News & Opinion

With overtime pay likely to become a reality for some salaried foodservice employees after Dec. 1, operators are rethinking what they expect managers to do off-site as part of their responsibilities. Answering email or scheduling shifts at home didn’t matter when the employees were exempted from overtime if they earned more than $23,660 per year. But with that threshold more than doubling on Dec. 1 to $47,476, a half hour spent here and there on administrative tasks could push a salaried manager over the 40-hours-per-week threshold and entitle him or her to overtime. And how does the...

Menu Development
frozen raspberries

“As a chef, I pretty much have grown up through the business thinking that fresh was always better—produce, fish and meats, especially,” says Ryan Conklin, executive chef for UNC Rex Healthcare’s culinary and nutrition services. “But the more ‘re-educated’ I get, the more I’m learning that some frozen options may be more appropriate for me to be using on my menus.”

Right now, the perception of frozen foods doesn’t match the reality, especially for high-volume foodservice operators, says Conklin. Often, chefs and operators picture not-great product that’s been sitting in a block of...

Sponsored Content
Roasted Beet Salad Pickled Blueberries
From Blueberry Council.

What’s trending in the culinary world? The basics! According to the NRA, diners today are craving authenticity, simplicity and freshness on menus. But basic ingredients don’t have to lead to boring menu options.

It’s easy to fall into the latest craze to capture consumer attention and drive sales. But we’ve learned it’s not always about novelty. Instilling a feeling of nostalgia and familiarity by using well-known and well-loved ingredients in new, experimental dishes can lead to an increase in adventurous dining decisions, while staying in your customers’...

FSD Resources