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Taking the short walk across the Piscataqua River from Kittery, Maine to Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Cathy Wolff points out historic points of interest. There are a lot of them, as Kittery– incorporated in 1647, is the oldest town in Maine. And Portsmouth, established in 1653, came just after. We’re on our way to Strawbery Banke a historic cluster of restored buildings at the site of one of Portsmouth’s earliest settlements.
It’s here that Wolff spends her Friday afternoons, handing out freshly caught fish to hungry locals who buy from New Hampshire Community Seafood—supporter of sustainable fisheries and local fishermen.
When the work is done, Cathy and I head back to her house, a fat package of fresh haddock in hand. This recipe, with skillet-melted cherry tomatoes, spring onion (sometimes called knob onion) and asparagus, is a snap to make and a great way to feature haddock or cod.
Sauteed Fish with Melted Tomato, Spring Onion + Asparagus
- 3 tsp olive oil
- 4, ½-lb fresh cod loins OR haddock fillets
- 1 pint fresh cherry tomatoes
- Small bunch green onions, roots discarded, white and light green portions thinly sliced (Save the green tops for another use)
- Small bunch fresh asparagus, base of stalks discarded, remaining portion of stalks cut into 1 ½ inch pieces
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Pat of butter (optional)
- In a sauté pan over medium heat warm the olive oil. Sauté the fish loins (or fillets) until firm and cooked through. Remove fish to a plate and keep warm. Add tomatoes to skillet and smash with a spatula, stirring until cooked through. (Add a bit of water if the pan gets dry.) Stir in thinly sliced onion. Add asparagus pieces. Continue cooking just until asparagus is bright green and al dente, and onions are soft. Salt and pepper to taste. Add a pat of butter if you’d like to richen it up. Individually plate fish; spoon tomato/onion/asparagus sauce over. Serve hot.
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