ALASKAN HALIBUT WITH PESTO
This morning I arrived to find a BIG ‘OL BAG of Fresh Basil sitting in my walk-in. What a great surprise to get garden fresh basil! I immediately thought about the Flaky White Alaskan Halibut that I had ordered the night before that we would be running for our Friday night special. PESTO I thought……..
Pesto is an Italian creation that traditionally uses Pine Nuts, Parmesan Cheese, Garlic, Basil Leaves, and Olive Oil. The exact amounts are not important but if one were to look hard enough we would find pesto that ranges from dry to very oily. So, we have to consider what we are going to use it for. On top of that, Pesto has been “Americanized”. As part of the food explosion of the eighties and nineties, a pesto was deemed to be “pesto” if it contained an herb, a cheese, a nut, and the oil. Thus one might make a Cilantro-Walnut Pesto, or a Cashew-Basil Pesto.
For our Halibut dish I made a Macadamia Nut Pesto using the Basil, Parmesan Cheese, and Olive Oil. I did not add very much oil because I wanted to coat the fish with it after it was cooked. Then when we pour a Pineapple Butter Sauce over the fish it will mingle with the pesto and create the flavors we are looking for. I do not add the garlic to my pesto as I feel the acidic nature of the raw garlic is too sharp to allow the subtle flavors of the basil, and the pineapple butter sauce to peek through.
Everyone LOVED it. And it gives the staff something fun to talk about with the guests.