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Fish and Shellfish, Mains

Pan-seared cod with potato and smoked sausage puree

Imagine yourself in Paris, hungry, sans reservations, but with a serious hankering for veal blanquette. If such a happy fate befalls you -- and you can't rustle up a Left Bank native for a bistro crawl -- you'd do well ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour | Serves 6
  • 2 pounds potatoes
  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter (about 3/4 stick), divided
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons shallots, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 pound smoked sausage, thinly sliced
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 6 (6-ounce) cod fillets
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives

Step 1Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Peel the potatoes, cut them into small cubes, place in a saucepan, cover with cold water, heat to a boil and cook until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes, place in a baking dish or pan and set in the oven to dry out and stay warm, 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 2Heat 3 tablespoons of butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is translucent, 7 to 9 minutes.

Step 3Raise the heat, add the wine and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the sausage and cook, stirring frequently, 5 minutes.

Step 4Combine with the potatoes in a large bowl, season generously with salt and pepper, and mash with a potato masher until the potatoes are fairly smooth. Cover and keep warm.

Step 5Combine the lemon juice, zest and 2 teaspoons of water in a saucepan over moderately high heat and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and whisk in the remaining 4 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, until all the butter is incorporated and the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and cover.

Step 6Rinse and pat dry the cod fillets and season on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat, add the fillets, and cook until one side is crisp and browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the fillets and cook until just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove the bones.

Step 7To serve, place a mound of the potatoes and sausage in the center of six plates, flatten each with a spatula, top with a cod fillet, browned side up, sprinkle with chives and drizzle with lemon butter sauce.

Note: From "The Bistros, Brasseries and Wine Bars of Paris," by Daniel Young. Young calls for skin-on cod fillets but The Times' Test Kitchen used the more widely available skinless. Bristol Farms markets usually carry cod fillets.
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