The quick sauce has a complex flavor that does not overpower the petrale (peh-TRAH-lay) sole, a sweet-fleshed Pacific Coast fish that needs quick cooking. This type of sole (flounder, actually) recently has been available in some area Whole Foods Markets; lemon sole can be substituted here.
Try to choose a strawberry package with fruit that is uniformly red and appropriately fragrant.
Serve with wild rice or lightly dressed salad greens.
- 1 to 1 1/4 cups washed and hulled strawberries, thinly sliced (about 10)
- 3/4 cup petite sirah
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon water
- 4 whole (6 ounces) skinless petrale sole fillets (may substitute lemon sole)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the strawberries and wine. Cook for 5 minutes, until the strawberries have softened and the mixture is fragrant. Add the honey and 1 to 2 teaspoons of the pepper to taste, mixing well.
While the sauce cooks, whisk together the cornstarch and water in a small bowl, then add to the saucepan. Cook for 1 minute, stirring until the sauce has thickened slightly (enough to coat the back of a spoon), then reduce the heat to low and keep warm. (If desired, strain out some of the grains of pepper using layers of fine-mesh cheesecloth; return the sauce and fruit to the pan.)
Season the fish with the salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Lightly coat both sides of the fillets with flour, shaking to remove any excess.
Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the fillets for 3 minutes on one side to develop a light golden crust; the edges will be opaque. Then carefully turn over and cook for 5 minutes, or until the fish is just cooked through. Divide the fillets among individual plates and drizzle the sauce around or on top. Serve immediately.
Adapted from a recipe on the Bargetto Winery Web site.
Tested by Bonnie Benwick.
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