Pan-Seared Alaskan Halibut with Israeli Couscous and Honey Hazelnut Vinaigrette

  • 2 pounds Alaskan halibut (4 filets)
  • 1 cup + 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons hazelnuts, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon local honey
  • ¼ cup champagne vinegar
  • 2 fennel bulbs, shaved
  • 1 grapefruit, peeled and segmented
  • 1 cup Israeli couscous
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fennel flowers for garnish (if available)

Pan-Seared Halibut

Season halibut with salt and pepper. Over high heat in a heavy, ovenproof pan, add
1 tablespoon olive oil, then add halibut. Watch for halibut to turn golden brown where fish touches the pan. Reduce heat to medium-low until fish naturally releases from pan. Next, turn fish and place pan in 400-degree oven for 3-4 minutes or until fish is cooked to desired temperature.

Honey Hazelnut Vinaigrette

Add hazelnuts, honey and champagne vinegar to a blender and pulse until chunky. Add 1 cup olive oil and blend until emulsified.

Fennel and grapefruit

Shave fennel with a mandoline. In a heavy-bottom pan, heat fennel and 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Sauté until color develops; reduce heat to low and continue to cook until fennel is caramelized. Add grapefruit and warm briefly.

Couscous

Add 1 cup of couscous to 3 quarts of boiling salted water. Let cook 3-5 minutes or until tender. Strain and rinse with cold water; drain well. When ready to serve, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a pan and gently warm; add half the Honey Hazelnut Vinaigrette to couscous, reserving the rest for garnish.

Assembly

Divide couscous onto four plates. Top with fish, fennel and grapefruit. Drizzle with remaining vinaigrette. Garnish with fennel flowers. Serves 4.

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