Pictures may tell the story but let me just describe our first course of the March menu and see if you miss the picture. Lenore says the broth and vegetables are crazy good alone, but there is so much more to the dish. Starting with the aromatics, shallots, onions, carrots and celery, I get a little sweating action going by crowding the pan and adding a bit of salt. In go the previously blanced red potatoes, skin on. Then I add the first defining flavor, that of the Navarre Spanish Sausage, which has been diced about 1/2 inch. Next more defining flavors are the white wine, about two cups, and when that is reduced a bit, the fresh halibut stock itself. For herbs, a pinch of about .5 grams saffron, oregano, parsley and chives. Then I let it simmer just long enough to pan-sear the bias cut halibut fillets to get a nice brown crust, which I then add to the simmering broth just to finish the job before placing in the bowl. By now those vegetables are to the tooth done, the broth a subtle gold from the saffron and beautiful against the white bowl. The fillets are just done and still crisp from the pan sear. But wait there’s more! While the simmer was going on, I refreshed the Dungeness crab stuffed piquillo peppers in the oven just to warm through and placed them on top of the stew, garnished with anchovy aioli and that bright red and yellow on top of the dish just pushed it over the top! Oh and sop that up with my crusty bread.
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