Every year, my cousin goes fishing in Alaska. When he gets to the dock, the fish is cleaned and then flash frozen, shrink wrapped, and then shipped home. He ends up with a freezer full of amazing fish. Typically, he ends up with equal amounts of salmon, halibut, and cod.
While everyone loves the salmon, I totally covet the cod (okay, and the halibut too). It's an amazing firm whitefish, and is less expensive than halibut or swordfish. It can be pan fried, deep fried, grilled, or in this case, baked.
This cod is sliced on an angle and then stuffed with a mixture of baby kale, scallions, celery, feta cheese, and olive oil. It actually also makes great leftovers for lunch the next day, believe it or not. It's probably because the fish was so incredibly fresh when it was flash frozen.
I served this with stir-fried snow peas with tomatoes and chilies from page 132 of Breath of a Wok by Grace Young (one of our Wok Wednesdays recipes for September). If you prep your mis en place for the stir fry, then put together the pesto and stuff the fish, you can stir fry the vegetables while the fish is baking. Voila! Dinner in 20 minutes!
This month, the #FishFridayFoodies are making stuffed fish, a theme chosen by Sneha of Sneha's Recipe.
After the recipe, check out the rest of the stuffed fish recipes.
Kale and Feta Pesto Stuffed Cod
Serves two, but easily scaled for four or six
1 tablespoon peanut or grapeseed oil
1 twelve ounce or 2 six ounce cod (or halibut) filets (approximately)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 scallion, cut crosswise into 1 to 2 inch pieces
1 cup loosely packed baby kale
1 small stalk of celery, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 to 3 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese, to taste
approximately 2 to 3 teaspoons of olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
- Oil a baking dish with the peanut or grapeseed oil.
- Place the cod in the baking dish and salt and pepper both sides.
- Cut slits on an angle into the fish, about 1 to 1 1/2 inches apart, on an angle, being careful to not cut all the way through.
- In a mini food processor, process the scallion, kale, celery, and feta until crumbly. Drizzle in the olive oil and process until it forms a paste. Mix in some salt and pepper to taste.
- Stuff the pesto into the slits of the cod. Fit in as much as you can, allowing some to overflow.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. The center should be opaque.
Adapted from Epicurious