Roasted Sablefish With Fennel Puree and Cranberry-Apple Agrodolce

Winter 2015

Executive chef Ned Bell of the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver is well-known as an ambassador for sustainable seafood. Bell spearheaded Chefs for Oceans, his personal bike ride across Canada to educate people on the importance of maintaining healthy waters. Here, he shares his sablefish recipe, a rich oily catch with great natural flavor, paired with savory and tart agrodolce — think cranberry relish on steroids.

6 sablefish fillets, 5 ounces each
sea salt and cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
Fennel Puree (recipe follows)
Cranberry-Apple Agrodolce (recipe follows)
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted and skinned

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season fish with salt and cracked black pepper.

In a large stovetop saute pan over medium-high heat, add oil and sear fish for 3 minutes per side. Place the pan in the oven and finish cooking for 5 minutes or until the center of the fish is opaque.

To serve, thinly spread about 1 tablespoon of warm Fennel Puree on each plate and top with sablefish. Garnish with the Cranberry-Apple Agrodolce and finish with a sprinkle of toasted hazelnuts.

Yield: 6 servings

FENNEL PUREE

2 tablespoons butter
1 large fennel bulb, diced 
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon sea salt

In a large pan over medium heat, melt the butter and saute the fennel with the garlic for 5 minutes. Add cream and salt and simmer while stirring until the fennel is tender. Puree all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Keep warm.

CRANBERRY-APPLE AGRODOLCE

2 cups frozen cranberries
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 shallot, thinly sliced into rings
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 sprigs fresh thyme 
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup apples, diced

In a deep pot over medium heat, simmer frozen cranberries with honey, vinegar, shallots, salt, and thyme for 10 minutes or until softened. Remove from the heat and stir in dried cranberries and apples. Remove thyme sprigs and let mixture cool before serving.

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