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Black Sea Bass with Fennel Confit and Tomato, Saffron and Basil Broth
For fennel confit:
1 bulb fennel, chopped
3 cups olive oil
Pinch red pepper flakes
Pinch star anise
Simmer all ingredients for 30 minutes. Strain out oil. Will keep, covered, in refrigerator for 2 weeks.
For tomato, saffron and basil broth:
5 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
1 teaspoon saffron
1/8 cup basil, chopped (don’t over-chop basil or it will bruise)
1 onion, chopped
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup shrimp or chicken stock
Sauté tomato, saffron, basil and onion in olive oil. Add stock; simmer 30 minutes. Strain and reserve liquid.
For sea bass:
4 6-8 ounce sea bass fillets, or any firm white fish, S.C.ales off and skin on
Olive oil for sautéing
Sauté fish in pan, skin side down, for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn over and put in oven-proof dish. Finish cooking fish in 450-degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes. To plate, divide fennel confit on 4 plates. Top with fish and drizzle broth over.
Ed Murray Jr. uses classic European cooking methods to create sensational Coastal Carolina cuisine. His entire menu is on the Web at www.parsonstable.com.