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Cook's discovery lean, versatile monkfish.

Prized for its lean, firm-textured flesh, monkfish is increasingly available in Western fish markets. Also known as angler, it is sometimes called "poor man's lobster," with prices ranging from $3 to $5 a pound. You won't see this Atlantic bottomfish sold whole, only its fillets, which taper from 2 inches to 1/2 inch think and weigh about 3/4 pound each. They're covered by a dense membrane that needs to be removed.

Here are four recipes that complement the flavor and texture of monkfish. Oven-poached Monkfish

1-1/2 pounds monkfish fillets About 1/2 cup dry white wine or regular-strength chicken broth

1/2 cup (1/4 lb.) butter or margarine

1/2 pound mushrooms, sliced

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour Salt

1-1/2 cups shredded Swiss cheese Chopped parsley

Remove membrane from fish (see at right) and discard. Rinse fish and pat dry. Fold narrow end under fillets to make evenly thick pieces. Set in a shallow 1-quart baking dish, add 1/2 cup wine, and cover with foil. Bake in a 400[deg.] oven until fish is opaque in center (cut to test), about 20 minutes. Pour off and reserve liquid; cover and chill fish as long as overnight.

In a 10-to 12-inch frying pan, melt half the butter over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and nutmeg. Cook, stirring, until edges of mushrooms are brown. Remove mushrooms, cover, and chill.

In pan, melt remaining butter; add flour. Off the heat, gradually add 1 cup poaching liquid (add more wine if needed). Bring to a boil, stirring. Add salt to taste; cover and chill up to overnight.

Drain any liquid from chilled fish. Spoon cold sause evenly over fish, then top with cheese and mushrooms. Bake, uncovered, in a 400[deg.] oven until hot, about 20 minutes. Garnish with parsley. Serves 4. Broiled Monkfish Brochette

From 1-1/2 pounds monkfish fillets, remove membrane (see below) and discard. Rinse fish and pat dry. Cut into 1-1/2-inch chunks. In a bowl, combine 1/4 cup olive oil, 3 cloves garlic (minced or pressed), 1/4 cup chopped parsley, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Stir in fish; cover and chill 1 hour. Thread fish on 4 slender skewers, dividing equally; between each 2 pieces of fish, put 1 lemon slice (you'll need about 10).

On a rack in a pan at least 12 by 15 inches, broil fish 4 inches from heat, turning once, until it's opaque in center (cut to test), about 10 minutes; baste with marinade. Serve hot. Makes 4 servings. Sauteed Monkfish with Caper Sauce

1-1/2 pounds monkfish fillets All-purpose flour

3 tablespoons salad oil Caper sauce (recipe follows) Parsley sprigs and lemon wedges

Remove membrane from fish (see picture below) and discard. Rinse fish and pat dry. Cut lengthwise through fillets; coat with flour and shake off excess.

Pour oil into a 10- to 12-inch frying pan on medium-high heat. When hot, add fish; cook until browned outside and opaque in center (cut to test), about 4 minutes per side. Spoon hot caper sauce around fish and garnish with parsley and lemon. Serve hot. Makes 4 servings.

Caper sauce. In a 10- to 12-inch frying pan with 2 tablespoons salad oil, cook 1 medium-size onion (finely chopped) and 2 medium-size tomatoes (cored, seeded, and chopped) on medium-high heat, striring, until onion is soft, about 15 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup dry white wine and 2 teaspoons each Dijon mustard and drained capers; boil, stirring, until thick. Use hot (sauce can be reheated). Stir-fried Monkfish and Snow Peas

1-1/2 pounds monkfish fillets

3 tablespoons salad oil Teriyaki sauce (recipe follows)

1/2 pound edible-pod peas, strings and ends removed

1 to 2 teaspoons sesame seed

Remove membrane (see small photograph) from fish and discard. Rinse fish and pat dry, then cut into 1-inch chunks. Pour 2 tablespoons oil into a work or 10- to 12-inch frying pan on high heat. When hot, add half the fish; stir gently, as needed, until opaque in center (cut to test), about 2 minutes. Lift out fish and set aside. Add remaining oil and cook the rest of the fish; set fish aside.

Bring teriyaki sauce to boiling in pan, stirring. Add peas and stir to heat, about 1 minute. Return fish and any accumulated juices to pan; mix gently to heat. Pour onto a warm platter and sprinkle with sesame seed. Serve hot. Makes 4 servings. Teriyaki sauce. Combine 1/4 cup regular-strenght chicken or beef broth, 2 tablespoons each dry sherry and soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sugar, and 1 tablespoon each lemon juice, minced fresh ginger, and cornstarch.
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Title Annotation:recipes
Date:Feb 1, 1984
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