Halibut with Corn Pops and Basil Broth

When choosing corn, Cornelius Gallagher suggests piercing the kernels with your fingernail. "If the liquid that comes out is cloudy, the corn is too starchy. You want a clear liquid." Finding the secret ingredient for this recipe—Corn Pops breakfast cereal—is even easier.

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  • Servings: 4

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  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons Corn Pops cereal, finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons fine dry bread crumbs
  • Scant 1/2 teaspoon mild curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 star anise pod
  • 2 ears of corn, husked
  • 1/3 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
  • Four 6-ounce skinless halibut fillets
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped basil, plus sprigs for garnish

How to make this recipe

  1. In a medium bowl, stir the butter with the Corn Pops, bread crumbs, curry powder, salt and cayenne. Transfer the butter to a piece of plastic wrap and form it into a 3-inch-long cylinder. Refrigerate the Corn Pops butter until firm.

  2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, combine the milk with the bay leaf and star anise. Break each ear of corn in half and add them to the saucepan. Simmer over moderately low heat until the corn is very tender, about 40 minutes. Let cool slightly, then cut the kernels from the cobs and transfer them to a blender. Discard the bay leaf and star anise and add 1/2 cup of the milk to the blender. Blend at low speed until pureed. Increase the speed to high and gradually add the remaining milk; puree until very smooth. Add the crème fraîche and puree until blended.

  3. Preheat the oven to 250°. Cut the Corn Pops butter into 4 pieces. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the grapeseed oil until shimmering. Season the halibut with salt and pepper and cook over high heat, turning once, until golden, about 6 minutes. Transfer the halibut to a baking dish and top each fillet with a slice of the Corn Pops butter. Bake in the oven for about 2 minutes, or just until the butter begins to melt.

  4. Add the basil to the blender and puree with the corn soup; season with salt. Transfer the halibut fillets to shallow bowls. Pour the soup all around, garnish with basil sprigs and serve.

Make Ahead

The recipe can be prepared through Step 2 and refrigerated overnight. Rewarm the soup before pureeing with the basil.

Contributed By Photo © Anna Williams Published July 2003

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