Hello there and Happy Friday! It’s been far too long. I recently wrapped up a wonderful year + of penning the Foodie and Cocktail columns for Sheridan Road Magazine which was an absolute pleasure. Writing for a magazine proved to be a much different experience than writing for this blog. Yes, I developed the recipes, styled the food, shot the photos and wrote the pieces just as I’ve done here at Fletcher + Fork, but the parameters of print required a new skill set. I am grateful for the growth and experience Sheridan Road provided, but I am happy to be back with the time and love required to make this a special place.
My absence has also been due to a project I will be able to share with you in May, but until then I will bring new stories, recipes, and entertaining ideas for our rapidly approaching Spring season. I particularly love this Cod Poached in Coconut Curry Broth for days like the ones Dickens describes in Great Expectations: “It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light and winter in the shade.” The warming spices of the dish will beat back a chill, yet it’s not so heavy that you feel deeply rooted in winter.
Cod Poached in Coconut Curry Broth
You can easily use peeled and deveined shrimp in place of the cod – simply reduce cooking time in the poaching step by two minutes.
2 large leeks
3 tablespoons canola oil
2 stalks lemongrass
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons kosher salt + more for seasoning
2 tablespoons Madras curry powder
1 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 dried lime leaves or the zest of two limes
4 cups vegetable stock
1 13.5-ounce can regular (not low fat) coconut milk
4 ounces dried Pad Thai rice noodles
1 1/2 pounds cod, cut into 2 -inch chunks
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Prepare leeks: remove dark green leaves, root ends, outermost layer, and discard. Slice remaining leeks in half lengthwise and rinse well under cool running water to remove dirt. Slice crosswise into thin half rounds.
Prepare lemongrass: remove tough green tops and outermost layer, then discard. Place stalks on cutting board and pound with a rolling pin or flat side of meat tenderizer to release oils. Set aside.
Heat 3 tablespoons canola oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add leeks and cook until softened, about 5-7 minutes, reducing heat if they begin to brown. Add garlic, ginger, 2 teaspoons salt, and curry powder, cooking and stirring 1 minute more. Stir in tomatoes, lime leaves or lime zest, vegetable stock, coconut milk, and prepared lemongrass, then bring to a low boil over medium heat.
While broth is heating, season cod pieces with salt. When it reaches a low boil add the noodles, stirring gently to separate. Poach the cod: place fish pieces in pot, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer, cooking 5-7 minutes, until fish is opaque.
Remove lemongrass stalks and lime leaves. Test for seasoning, stirring in more salt and pepper if needed. Ladle into four shallow bowls, squeezing a lime wedge over each. Garnish with chopped scallions and another lime wedge.