SAUTÉED WOLF FISH in Parma Ham and Spinach with Tomato and Scallion Risotto
1.5 lb wolf fish fillet
1/2 lb Parma ham
8 oz spinach, preferably rather large leaves, blanched
Tomato and scallion risotto
1 tablespoon grape seed oil
2 tablespoons butter
4 sprigs of chives
Salt and pepper
Wolf fish is fished quite a lot in Icelandic waters. It certainly is not pretty to look at, and has to be handled with care when caught. Its jaws are fiercely strong and if for example a booted foot is caught between them when the fish has been brought into the boat, quite some injury to the wearer of the boot is well-nigh certain. In spite of this the wolf fish is a favored catch among fishermen, since it is a great delicacy, its meat being soft and pleasantly fat.
Blanch the spinach and then squeeze it a bit to remove excess water. Cut the fillet of wolf fish into strips about an inch or a bit more in diameter and about four inches in length and season them with salt and pepper. Spread thin slices of Parma ham out in a square about four inches in width and long enough to be rolled around the strip of wolf fish, with a bit to spare. Put a layer of spinach on top of the slices of ham, covering the width completely, but leaving uncovered about half an inch at the far edge. Place the strip of wolf fish across the width of spinach and wrap the ham and spinach around it covering the fish entirely. The edge of ham with no spinach is used to close up the roll.
When the roll of ham, spinach and wolf fish is ready, wrap aluminum foil, brushed with oil, around it, closing the foil wrapping at the ends by twisting them slightly. Then put the roll in a pan with the grape seed oil and roll it in the pan for a minute. This is done so that the ham does not curl off the roll. Next remove the aluminum foil, put the butter in a clean pan and sauté the roll of ham and wolf fsh for about four minutes. The roll should be rolled constantly in the pan while it is being sautéed.
To serve, cut the ham and wolf fish roll into pieces about an inch and a half to two inches in length, make a bed of tomato risotto in the center of a plate and arrange the cut pieces, one or more, on top of it. Finally, decorate the arrangement with some pieces of chives.
The taste of this dish is a most pleasant blend of the flavor of the ham, the spinach and the fish, which go most satisfyingly together. The tomato and scallion risotto, being mellow in taste, enhances the combination, so in its entirety here is a most savory dish.