By Jill Lightner
Photo by Amy Johnson Photography
The Gravenstein apple’s complex flavor offers plenty of brightness, but is fairly low in tannins. In Tilted Shed Ciderworks’ Graviva!, the cider is blended with a lovely mix of bittersharp varieties that give it some richness and funk. Pair with buttery Pacific halibut and dream of a lazy California afternoon.
Pan-seared Halibut with Cider Buerre Blanc and Spiced Delicata Squash
Recipe by Chef Daniel Kedan of Backyard, Forestville, CA
FOR THE BEURRE BLANC
1 ½ cups cider
1 shallot, diced
6 stems parsley
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
¼ cup heavy cream
½ pound (2 sticks) butter, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt, to taste
Combine cider, shallots, parsley stems and peppercorns in a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and reduce until cider is well concentrated and only a small amount remains. Adjust heat to medium, add cream and reduce to just over a tablespoon.
Slowly whisk in butter, a few pieces at a time. Stir in lemon juice and season to taste with salt. Strain, and keep warm over very low heat while you prepare the squash and halibut.
FOR THE SQUASH
¼ cup sweet paprika
¼ cup piment d’Espelette
1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
1 tablespoon salt
2 small Delicata squash, seeded and sliced into ¼-inch half moons
2 tablespoons olive oil
Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine paprika, piment d’Espelette, pepper and salt in a small dish. Place squash pieces in a large bowl and toss with olive oil. Sprinkle on spice mixture and toss to coat. Place on prepared baking sheet and roast for 10-12 minutes.
FOR THE HALIBUT
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
4 5-ounce halibut fillets
Salt, to taste
Preheat oven to 350° F. In a large, oven-safe skillet, warm the oil over medium-high heat. Once it’s hot, place halibut in the pan and sear for about 1 minute, until golden brown. Place skillet in the oven for 5-7 minutes, until halibut is cooked through and flakes gently under pressure. Season to taste with salt.
To assemble, divide the squash equally between four plates. Place halibut on top. Drizzle the perimeter of the plate with beurre blanc.