Tag Archives: grape seed oil

SAUTÉED STUFFED SQUID with Portobello Mushrooms Risotto, Squid Tentacles and Smoked Roma Tomato Sauce


SAUTÉED STUFFED SQUID with Portobello Mushrooms Risotto, Squid Tentacles and Smoked Roma Tomato Sauce

[Serving four]

8 Squid

4 Roma tomatoes

Bunches of rose marine

Bunches of thyme

Bunches of birch bark

1 tablespoon grape seed oil

Portobello mushroom risotto

Pinches of micro bok choy

3 oz butter

Squid was not caught much in Iceland in former days, and then mostly for bait. No one thought of eating this most singular fish at that time. This has changed, so nowadays the squid is a sought-after delicacy in Icelandic cuisine.

Small squid is used for this course, both the body and the tentacles. Begin by removing the tentacles and the innards, taking care not to rupture the ink bladder. Clean both the body and the tentacles. Then stuff the squid body with Portobello mushrooms and risotto made from vegetable stock. Take care not to put too much stuffing into the body. When stuffed, close the open end with a toothpick. Sauté the stuff ed squid bodies in butter in a pan until golden brown. Do not overcook the squid, or it will become chewy. After the sautéing, remove the toothpicks.

Sauté the tentacles in grape seed oil, add strips of squid and season with salt and white pepper, adding some butter toward the end. Sauté the tentacles and strips of squid until they start curling up a bit. For the sauce, start by throwing some rose marine, thyme and birch bark on the embers in a grill. Put the tomatoes on the rack, and close the lid completely to keep the smoke inside. The tomatoes are left to cure in the smoke for an hour or so. When the tomatoes are done, peel their skin off and churn them into sauce in a mixer. Heat the sauce close to the boiling point and season to taste with salt, pepper and fresh lime juice. Finally, whip cubes of cold butter vigorously into the sauce with a hand blender till the sauce becomes somewhat frothy.

When this dish is served, the frothy smoked-tomato sauce is used to make a pool in the center of a plate. The sautéed squid is arranged in the center of the pool of sauce, and the arrangement decorated with some micro bok choy and the curled strips of squid.

In this course, which has a lot of appeal, the smoked tomato sauce goes well with the taste of the squid and the stuffing inside it. It entails a bit of work, but I have found the time taken in preparing it entirely worth while.


SAUTÉED WOLF FISH in Parma Ham and Spinach with Tomato and Scallion Risotto



SAUTÉED WOLF FISH in Parma Ham and Spinach with Tomato and Scallion Risotto

[Serving four]

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.



WHITE WINE-STEAMED MUSSELS in Herb and Lemon Grass Sauce

[Serving four]

24 mussels

3 oz butter

2 cups white wine

1 stem of lemon grass

½ red onion, diced

Juice from two lemons

1 clove of garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon of grape seed oil

2 tablespoons of chopped chives

Salt and pepper

Mussels abound along the Icelandic coastline, where they thrive beautifully in the cold semi-arctic waters. They were used somewhat for food in former times in some areas of the country, and nowadays they have been universally accepted as an integral part of fine cuisine.

Begin by cutting the lemon grass in half and beating it with a meat mallet to bring out the flavor. Then put the beaten grass and the grape seed oil in a pot along with the onions and sauté these a bit with the garlic. Add the mussels, squeeze some lemon juice over them, add the two tablespoons of chopped chives and finally the white wine. Turn on the heat, cover the pot and steam the mussels until they open, at which time they should be removed from the pot and one of the shells removed, leaving the fish in the other. Next, remove the lemon grass from the broth, add the butter to it and stir until it has completely melted. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Arrange the shells with the fish in them in a long and narrow dish, six shells for each serving, and pour the sauce into each shell. It is excellent to served French baguettes with this course to soak up the extra sauce on the plate. In this course a great deal depends on the sauce. The fish should be almost floating in it in the shells. They are picked up between the fingers and the fish along with the sauce sucked out of them. This may sound a bit crude, but be assured; it is fun and most certainly very satisfying.