We're receiving a lot of food magazines these days.
Though the blog has been excellent for getting us to use the magazines, which was our goal all along, it has also unexpectedly caused us to start receiving more magazines.
We started getting Saveur because we felt like we needed to, you know, for research purposes. And the Food Network Magazine has started arriving in our mailbox every month. And now, we've just received a new magazine and we're afraid that we're not going to be able to stop reading it.
We were thrilled to receive an email from the staff at Fine Cooking magazine, introducing themselves and offering to send us a sample issue. We had seen Fine Cooking on newsstands, but like dieters who can't be around desserts, we opted not to leaf through it for fear that we'd suddenly have another subscription on our hands.
After now reading two issues, we think Fine Cooking is really worth your time. They have recently redesigned their magazine and the look is very contemporary. It has a few small features that we really loved:
- The photography is wonderful -- big, beautiful & inviting photos. There are photos of soups & fruits in here that we could stare at forever.
- The Contributors page has a great spin, asking each individual to answer a few questions, like "My guilty-food pleasure is..." or "The last thing I cooked was...."
- Weekend Project features bigger cooking endeavors. In February/March, it's an eight-page spread about making Homemade Croissants.
- And most importantly, it has delectable recipes. In the March issue alone, we found at least six recipes we'd like to make, from Real Chocolate Mousse to Ellie Krieger's Five-Treasure Fried Rice. We finally settled on one: Sear-Roasted Halibut with Blood Orange Salsa.
Sunday was a beautiful day here, bright and sunny, the first truly warm day of the year. It seemed like an ideal evening for this light, summery meal. After spending the afternoon with friends, we stopped by the store and picked up the ingredients for this dish.
It all came together easily. The salsa is a simple but flavorful mixture of reduced orange juice, blood oranges, onion and cilantro. The halibut, after being seared on the stove top, roasts for just a few minutes in the oven to finish.
We cook fish with citrus salsa a lot, actually. It's kind of become our go-to preparation for fish. A tangy, sweet fruit salsa plays great off fish, especially if it's been seared or grilled. But we'd never tried it with halibut before. It's a fantastic match: The thick, rich, almost fatty halibut goes great with this bold salsa.
It was the perfect end to a beautiful day: wonderfully flavored halibut topped with a bright, citrusy salsa. We served the halibut alongside some salad greens we had purchased that morning at the farmer's market.
It made us crave summer -- and look forward to more dishes from Fine Cooking.
3/4 cup fresh navel or Valencia orange juice (from 2 medium oranges)
3 small blood oranges, cut into segments, segments cut in half
2 Tbs. minced red onion
1 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs. finely grated navel or Valencia orange zest (from 2 medium oranges)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. finely grated navel or Valencia orange zest (from 1 small orange)
1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 6-oz. skinless halibut fillets
3 Tbs. olive oil
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F.
In a small saucepan, boil the orange juice over medium heat until reduced to 1/4 cup, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool.
In a medium bowl, combine the reduced orange juice, blood orange segments, onion, cilantro, olive oil, and orange zest. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Cook the halibut
In a small bowl, mix the orange zest, thyme, 1-1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Rub the mixture all over the halibut fillets. Heat the oil in a 12-inch ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering hot, arrange the fillets in the pan. Sear for about 2 minutes without moving; then use a thin slotted metal spatula to lift a piece of fish and check the color. When the fillets are nicely browned, flip them and put the pan in the oven.
Roast until the halibut is just cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and transfer the halibut to serving plates. Spoon some of the salsa over each fillet.