Chilipepper Rockfish with Sprouted Lentils, Spinach and Local Flowers


(Serves 4)

1 cup sprouted lentils
Extra virgin olive oil
Local flowers/herbs (radish greens, sorrel, beach spinach)

Spinach/Herb Purée
1 quart spinach (raw)
4 whole shallots
3/4 cup grapeseed oil or similar blended oil
4 tablespoons sliced almonds (untoasted)
1 tablespoon chives (chopped)
1 tablespoon cilantro
4 tablespoons parsley
1 tablespoon tarragon
4 tablespoons mustard green
4 tablespoons chervil
1 tablespoon mint
1/2 tablespoon salt

Chilipepper Rockfish
1 chilipepper rockfish (cut into 4 portions)
Lemon juice
Sea salt
Lime zest


Spinach/Herb Purée
Prepare this the day before you make your dish so that the flavor develops.
Roast shallots in their skins at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Let cool and then scoop out the middle of each.
Place shallots, grapeseed oil and sliced almonds in a blender or food processor. Process ingredients until you get a smooth purée (and make sure it’s not too hot).
Add the raw spinach and blend.
Next, add chives, cilantro, parsley, tarragon, mustard green, chervil, mint and salt. Blend for 2 minutes or until herbs are incorporated.
Put purée into a clean deli container (or similar container) and top with olive oil.

Sprouted Lentils
Cook the sprouted lentils for about 10 minutes in salted water or until tender, but do not overcook.
Strain off the water. While still warm, fold in the spinach/herb purée. Check seasoning.

Chilipepper Rockfish
Lightly cook over a well-seasoned grill for 3 to 4 minutes per side on low heat. You want to fully cook the fish while keeping it moist.
Once the fish is cooked to desired doneness, season first with lemon juice and then sea salt. Finish with some lime zest.

To finish and serve:
Place some of the sprouted lentil and spinach/herb purée mixture in the bottom of a small bowl.
Next, place the fish on top of the mixture. Add some olive oil around the fish.
Finish by placing local flowers or herbs on top of the dish.

Recipe by: Justin Cogley
Executive chef of Aubergine in Carmel, California

Rockfish, Chilipepper, Wild, Domestic

Conservation Note:

Chilipepper rockfish caught by the California Groundfish Collective are a “Best Choice” because of effective management and lack of sustainability concerns.

Buyer beware: rockfish is often mislabeled as red snapper or Pacific snapper. There are no true snappers on the Pacific Coast of North America.

Recipe courtesy of Seafood Watch ® a registered service mark of the Monterrey Bay Aquarium Foundation.


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