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Flounder Rolls with Pesto

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Chef Gennaro Contaldo of Passione is one of London's best Italian chefs. His terrific cookbook, Passione, has plenty of simple recipes inspired by a childhood spent fishing and foraging. In the recipe here, Contaldo combines fish and vegetables in a Parmesan-rich pesto sauce. He opts to use delicate sole but flounder, which is also light and flaky, is a fine and less expensive substitute.

  1. 5 cups basil leaves, packed (3 1/2 ounces)
  2. 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  3. 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  4. 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  5. Salt and freshly ground pepper
  6. Four 6- to 7-ounce flounder or sole fillets
  7. 1 small zucchini, cut into matchsticks
  8. 1 red bell pepper, seeded and julienned
  1. In a food processor, combine the basil, garlic, Parmesan and 2/3 cup of olive oil and process to a puree. Scrape the pesto into a bowl and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Lay the fish fillets on a work surface, boned side down. Season the fillets with salt and pepper and place an equal amount of the zucchini and red pepper strips across the narrow end of each fillet. Tightly roll up the fillets and secure them with toothpicks. Season the rolls with salt and pepper and lightly drizzle them all over with olive oil.
  3. Lightly oil a large steamer basket and place it in a large saucepan over 1/2 inch of boiling water. Put the rolls in the steamer basket, cover and steam over moderately high heat until just cooked through, about 10 minutes. Transfer the rolls to plates, spoon some of the pesto alongside and serve.


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