Halibut with Carrot-Ginger Purée

halibutA few weeks ago, Ted and I decided to take advantage of Maya’s girl scout meeting and go out for a nice dinner. We went to Lark Creek, which is kind of hit and miss. The atmosphere is nice, the service is pretty good, and the food is sometimes wonderful, sometimes a bit so-so. I was contemplating the pork chop, when the waiter brought the couple next to us their food. The husband had a yummy looking scallop dish, but the wife’s halibut was drool-worthy. I’m glad I saw it, because it wasn’t on the regular menu, and I’m not positive I would have ordered it just hearing about it. It was delicious. The halibut was creamy and tender, and the carrot-ginger purée made the dish. It had just the right combination of flavors to make it really special. Ted had a leg of lamb that he enjoyed, but he said he thought my halibut was overall better. I agreed.

So when I was thinking of what to make for Ted’s birthday dinner on Monday, I decided to try to make that same dish at home. Halibut isn’t cheap by any means, but it’s certainly less expensive at the store than at a restaurant. I looked online and found this recipe, which includes a carrot-ginger purée, and decided to try that.

One problem I had with the recipe was that I was out of cumin. I don’t remember the purée I had at Lark Creek having cumin or not, but this purée came out pretty good, but just…missing something. Just a bit. The halibut was delicious. Give it a try, but don’t skip the cumin.

Halibut with Carrot-Ginger Purée

* 1/2 pound carrots
* 3/4 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger root
* 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin, or to taste
* 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into pieces
* 1 lb halibut fillet, divided
* Spinach leaves, washed and trimmed
* Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Peel carrots and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces.

In a large saucepan bring 4 cups salted water to a boil and cook carrots until tender, about 7 minutes. Reserve 2 cups cooking liquid and drain carrots in a colander. In a blender purée hot carrots in batches with reserved cooking liquid, ginger root, cumin, and salt and pepper to taste (use caution when blending hot liquids).

Season halibut with salt and pepper. Bake in 350 degree oven until done, probably about 10-15 minutes.

Meanwhile, steam spinach until just wilted.

To serve, place a large spoonful (or two) of purée on your plate. Top with some spinach, and then the halibut.

Next time I make this, I’ll double check the cumin first. If you’ve ever made an awesome, slightly Asian tasting carrot-ginger purée, send me the recipe. I’d love to try it.

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