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Roasted Monkfish Over Mole Negro #SundayFunday


Today the Sunday Funday group is cooking with chiles. Thanks to Stacy of Food Lust People Love, Sue of Palatable Pastime, Rebekah of Making Miracles, and Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm for coordinating this low-stress group. Today Karen of Karen's Kitchen Stories is hosting the Sunday Funday bloggers as we cook with chiles. She wrote: "Cook, bake, or assemble a dish with chiles. Jalapeños, Poblanos, Anaheims, Thai chiles, Serranos, Hatch, or any other chile!" Here's the spicy line-up...


Roasted Monkfish Over Mole Negro

While I considered all the possibilities and thought about sharing new versions of my Whiskey-Pickled Jalapeños, Candied Jalapeño-Parmesan Sourdough, or Chile Relleno-Topped Chorizo Burger - all pictured above -, I realized that my favorite way to showcase chiles is in a mole. This mole takes a lot of time and needs to rest for, at least, 24 hours before using it. So, do this ahead of time.

Ingredients

Monkfish serves 4
  • 4 monkfish fillets, approximately 1/2 to 3/4 pound each
  • freshly ground salt
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • ground cinnamon for garnish

Mole makes 5 to 6 cups of mole so you'll have lots and lots of leftovers for other dishes
  • 6 to 8 Tablespoons lard (preferably home-rendered)
  • 2 to 4 cups homemade chicken stock
  • 4 ounces dried ancho chiles 
  • 4 ounces dried  pasilla chiles
  • 2 Tablespoons pecans
  • 2 Tablespoons peanuts
  • 2 Tablespoons almonds
  • 1 Tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1/8 cup dried apricots
  • 1/8 cup dried prunes
  • 1/8 cup raisins
  • sherry (enough to cover the dried fruits)
  • 1 large or 2 medium onions
  • 4 unpeeled garlic cloves
  • 1 large ripe tomato
  • 8 ounces tomatillos, with husks
  • 1 plantain
  • 1" cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 18 grams chocolate (1/2 of an Abuelita chocolate tablet or other)
  • salt to taste
Procedure

Mole
Bring your chicken stock to a boil, then hold it at a simmer. Slice your dried peppers lengthwise. Open them up and take out the seeds and the veins. Set the seeds aside. You can discard the stems and veins. 

Cut the apricots and plums to the size of the raisins and place them in a medium bowl. Pour sherry over the top of them until they are submerged, approximately 1/2 cup. Set aside.


With tongs, hold peppers over an open flame until they blister and turn a lighter shade of brown. Place them in a large bowl and pour hot stock over the top. Every 10 to 15 minutes, turn the peppers or press them down so that they are submerged.


Melt 1 Tablespoon lard in a skillet and toast the nuts. I started with the almonds, added the pecans, then added the peanuts. When they are all golden brown, approximately 5 to 7 minutes, place them in the bowl with the peppers. Toast the sesame seeds until they begin to pop. Place those in the bowl with the peppers, too.

Melt 1 Tablespoon large in the skillet and toast the spices. I started with the cinnamon sticks and clove and ended with the oregano. Once toasted, place them in the bowl with the peppers, nuts, and seeds.


Melt 1 Tablespoon lard in the same skillet and char the seeds from the peppers. You want these really, really burnt. Place the seeds in a large mason jar filled with ice water. Let stand for 30 minutes. Change the water and ice and let stand for another 30 minutes. 


Melt 1 Tablespoon lard in the same skillet and fry thick slices of plantain until crisped and golden. Place those in the bowl with the peppers.


Cut onion, tomato, and tomatillo into large chunks, Crush and mince the garlic. Melt 2 Tablespoons lard in your skillet and cook onion, garlic, tomato, and tomatillo until everything is softened and the onion turning translucent. Place the chocolate in the mixture and cook until the chocolate is melted. Stir well to combine.

Combine all of the ingredients into one large bowl - the peppers, the sherry-soaked fruit, the chocolate-tomato mixture, and the charred pepper seeds. Now you are ready to combine all of the elements and purée all the ingredients, using either a blender and food processor combination or a blender by itself. In batches, purée everything until smooth.


In a large, heavy saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the remaining lard over high heat until rippling. Add the purée, all at once, taking care to avoid splatters. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and cook, stirring frequently, for at least 30 minutes until the taste of the chiles has mellowed. Season to taste with salt. Set aside. The flavors will deepen and develop the longer you let the mole sit. I left mine to age overnight - in the fridge - before using.

Monkfish
Salt the monkfish, then preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat olive oil in a flat skillet. Pat the fish dry and sear it for 3 to 4 minutes, turning it a few times to make sure that all sides are browned.

Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast for 10 to 12 minutes - just until the fish is cooked through but still moist and juicy in the middle. Remove from the oven, tent with foil, and let rest for five minutes.

To Serve
Warm the mole sauce and spoon a pool into individual serving dishes. Place a roasted monkfish fillet on the top. Dust with a scant sprinkle of ground cinnamon for garnish.


That's a wrap  for our #SundayFunday chile fest. We'll be back next week as Stacy of Food Lust People Love leads us in a round-up of lamb recipes. Lamb is one of my favorite meats, so I'm  excited to get some new-to-me recipes. Can't wait!

Comments

  1. Looks delicious and such a detailed recipe, must try this!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Mole always has a huge list of ingredients so I've avoided making it for a single recipe thus far, Camilla. I like your idea of making a big batch and having leftovers for other dishes! Definitely going to give this a try. It looks great with the fish!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Camilla, an interesting recipe as I've not tried making mole at home. I've tasted the sauce once in an authentic Mexican restaurant and was totally intrigued by the use of chocolate in a savory sauce. Tempting me to try the sauce out at home.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You packed so MUCH flavor into that sauce - I can only imagine the flavor!!

    ReplyDelete

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