Halibut Steaks with Moroccan Spiced Oil
- SERVINGS: 4
This fragrant, lightly spicy oil is lovely with any white-fleshed or meaty fish; try it with tuna or sea bass.
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Four 1/2 -pound halibut steaks, about 1 inch thick
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- In a small skillet, toast the coriander, cumin and fennel seeds over moderate heat, shaking the skillet, just until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a spice grinder or mortar, add the crushed red pepper and grind to a powder. Return the ground spices to the skillet. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and cook over low heat just until warmed through. Pour the oil through a very fine strainer or a tea strainer and keep warm.
- In a large nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of oil until shimmering. Season the fish with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat until browned on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Turn and cook the other side until browned and the fish is just cooked through, about 3 more minutes. Transfer the halibut to warmed plates, drizzle with the spiced oil and serve.
When halibut steaks are dressed in oil, the wine needs to have plenty of richness to compensate. Look for a weighty California Chardonnay.