Stone bass with cauliflower puree

  • 4 Servings
  • 20mPrep Time
  • 20mCook Time
  • 40mReady In
  • Category : Food
  • Subcategory : Seafood
  • Main Ingredient : fish
  • Chef : Jerome Bacle

A vastly underrated vegetable, rarely seen on American menus, cauliflower (Brassica oleracea botrytis) is actually a cluster of immature flower buds.


Cauliflower puree: 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 tablespoon butter 1 cup chopped shallots 3 cups coarsely chopped cauliflower 1 cup whipping cream 1 tablespoon French purple mustard (available at gourmet shops; tarragon mustard may substitute) Salt and pepper Sauce: 2 cups beurre blanc infused with 4 big sprigs lemon thyme Fish: Salt and pepper Olive oil 2 tablespoons butter 4 6-ounce fillets Atlantic stone bass (aka Carolina wreckfish), or other fish such as striped bass, grouper, Lake Erie bass or walleyed pike Vegetables: 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 cup Nicoise olives, pitted and cut in half 1 pint teardrop tomatoes, cut in half 1 teaspoon chopped garlic 1 teaspoon chopped parsley 1 teaspoon chopped basil 8 pieces baby fennel, cleaned and trimmed Salt and pepper to taste


Make the puree:

  • Heat a medium pan over medium heat, the oil and butter and cook the shallots and cauliflower till soft.
  • Stir in the cream, scraping the pan, and simmer until thick.
  • Season with salt and pepper and puree in a blender, add the purple mustard, blend again and adjust seasoning if necessary. Strain.

Make the sauce:

  • Follow any standard recipe for beurre blanc, adding 2 sprigs of lemon thyme.
  • After straining, infuse 2 more sprigs in the very hot sauce for about 10 minutes. Keep warm.

Cook the fish:

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  • Season the fish with salt and pepper.
  • Heat a skillet with olive oil over high heat.
  • Sear the fish to give a nice coloration on one side, and then flip it in the pan and add a bit of butter; put it the hot oven for 6 to 8 minutes, remove, and let it rest on a rack for 4 to 5 minutes.

Prepare the vegetables:

  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet and quickly saute the olives and tomatoes; add chopped garlic and herbs.
  • Oil the baby fennel and season with salt.
  • Grill or saute till crisp tender.

To serve:

  • Divide the puree among four plates.
  • Mix the sauce with a hand blender to make the emulsion nice, and pour around the puree.
  • Top with the vegetables and fish.