With its delicate sweet flavour and firm texture, pan-seared fresh halibut with minted spring peas and golden fingerling potatoes makes a lovely light and delicious dinner. Overcooking can dry it out, so pan-searing in an oil and butter mixture keeps it moist and flaky, and creates a perfect crispy skin. High in protein yet low in calories, this luscious firm fleshed flaky fish is sensational served with spring peas with fresh chopped mint and butter, fingerling potatoes and a simple low fat homemade tartar sauce, for an elegant and healthy dish that celebrates the coming of spring.
Pan-Seared Halibut with Minted Peas & Fingerling Potatoes
1 lb Halibut, cut in 2 pieces
2 cups frozen or fresh spring peas
1 -2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, plus 2 sprigs for garnish
6 fingerling potatoes
2 tbsp vegetable oil
4 tbsp butter, divided
1 lemon, sliced for garnish
Maldon salt and fresh white or black pepper
Set a medium pot of water to boil for the potatoes. Pat the halibut dry with a paper towel and sprinkle with a pinch of Maldon salt. When the water starts to boil, pop in the potatoes and cook for for 20-25 minutes. While they are boiling, add the oil and a tablespoon of butter to a nonstick frying pan and set over medium-high heat. When hot, place the halibut skin side down and cook until the skin is crisp, about 5-6 minutes, then turn over and continue cooking until just cooked through, about 13-15 minutes, depending on the thickness.
Meanwhile, place a small pot of water over high heat and when boiling, pour in the peas and cook until soft. When the potatoes are cooked through, drain and place back into the pot on low with a tablespoon of butter and season with salt and pepper. Allow to brown slightly while checking on the fish and peas. When the fish is ready, remove from the heat and set aside. Once the peas are cooked through, remove from the heat, drain and season with a tablespoon of butter and the chopped mint; remove the potatoes from the heat.
To serve, arrange the halibut on 2 warm dinner plates with the fingerling potatoes and peas. Garnish with sliced lemon and finish with a sprig of mint on each piece of halibut, with a flurry of extra chopped mint over the whole dish.
Low-Fat Tartar Sauce
Makes 1 1/4 cup
1/2 cup low fat mayonnaise
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp chopped capers
2 tbsp chopped gherkins
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tbsp chopped shallot
1 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Add the mayonnaise, yogurt, Dijon mustard, capers, gherkins, garlic, shallot, lemon juice, parsley, and salt and pepper to a small bowl. Stir well to combine, then taste and adjust for seasoning. Cover and chill until ready to serve.