Making the Tomato Sauce, Cooking the Swordfish & Plating Dish

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 15,501
    Chef Amy Riolo demonstrates making tomato sauce, cooking sauce, and plating the dish.

    Amy Riolo: Hi! I am Amy Riolo. Today, we are making swordfish and eggplant bundles with artichokes, garlic and mint. I am going to show you how to make the tomato sauce which our swordfish and eggplant bundles are actually going to simmer in.

    So let's get started by putting a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil into our pan which is on medium heat. We are just going to bring this around in the bottom to make sure our olive oil covers the bottom of the pan. As soon as the olive oil begins to release its olive aroma, that's when you know you can add your garlic. So here I have two cloves of finely chopped garlic. You can add more or less, if you like. Garlic has so many wonderful healthful properties that as much as you like, that's how much I would add to this dish. Now I can start to smell the garlic aroma and it's just starting to turn color. So now I am going to add a cup of tomato puree and I am going to turn my fire down to its simmer. So this is tomato puree which is literally just strained tomatoes. We just want to stir to incorporate our tomato puree with our garlic and our olive oil. You want to keep this on a simmer, low-medium heat would be absolutely fine.

    Now once that's incorporated, you can add your diced tomatoes. We are mixing two different kinds of tomatoes in this recipe because like I mentioned that puree to give us a nice saucy consistency but then we want the diced or the chopped tomatoes to give us a little bit of body and a little bit more texture in our recipe, just to make it a little bit more interesting. Now we are going to add our freshly ground pepper. So I have added my sea salt. Unrefined sea salt is the healthiest form of salt that we can get. In addition to having all of those great flavors of the sea, it has a lot of trace minerals and it hasn't been chemically processed. So it's very good for us. So this is about two cups of liquid now. We have added one cup of the diced tomatoes and a cup of the tomato puree.

    If you wanted to use two cups of one or the other, that would be fine, but this is perfect for this recipe. You can play around with it at your own leisure at home. Now I am going to add a little bit of crushed red chilly flakes. Harris Teeter has these wonderful pepper mills now, that you can buy and just grind your crushed red chillies as you go and it's really nice. Now I am going to add about two tablespoons of our freshly chopped basil. If you didn't have fresh basil, you could add fresh parsley. If you had to use a dried herb in this recipe, I would use dried oregano. So now we have got those on incorporated and we can add our pine nuts. The pine nuts really give it nice body and more of a buttery flavor and really help this dish to see so elegant and luxuries. But again they are very simple flavors. So I am going to bring our heat up and just allow this to come to a light boil. So now you can see our sauce is starting to simmer. So I am going to turn this down to a medium and I am going to add our swordfish and eggplant bundles. You can just add them one at a time, like this. You don't really want to cloud them. You want to kind of scatter them a little bit. You are just going to scatter a little bit of the sauce right on top of the fish, so that it can seep in and get flavored as it cooks. This smell is absolutely wonderful. To combine the smells of a garden and the ocean together, really are some of the most pleasurable forms of eating.

    You can choose yourself, if you want to cover this dish or not. If you cover the dish, the sauce will be a little bit thinner. If you leave it exposed this way and cook it, the sauce will get thicker very quickly. So it just depends on how much of a sauce you want and what you want this dish to look like when you are done. It's a good general rule as you go. For this recipe I think I am going to go ahead and cover it, I am going to simmer for about 10-15 minutes. So now we are ready to plate our swordfish and eggplant bundles with pur artichokes, garlic and mint. As you can see, our swordfish and eggplant bundles are finished cooking. The flesh of the swordfish is now white. If you were to touch it with a fork or any utensil, it will flake apart very easily. So that's how we know that it's cooked through. We can just take one bundle like this, a serving would be one bundle per person, and place it in the center of our plate. Then we want to slice it in half on the diagonal, just with one swipe this way. Then move on to set it up on either end, so that it's next to each other this way. that way you have a little bit of your filling exposed and it looks really pretty to see that eggplant coming out of the swordfish.

    Then what we will do is take some of our pan fried artichokes and just place them around. We can use about two and we will just put them opposite of each other here, kind of, on either side of our swordfish bundles. Then what I am going to do is take a little bit of the sauce from our pan and use that to garnish the top of our swordfish, the top of our plate. A little bit right down on the top and then the rest will layer right around the sides to fill out the bottom of the plate. Plate size is really important for wellness. It's one of the things that we don't talk about that much but it's really important. A lot of research has been done specially at the Cornell University Food and Brand Lab. They found that the amount of food you eat is very proportionate to the kind of plate that you eat on. So if you are trying to watch the amount of food that you take in, the smaller the plate that you can use, the better because it makes you feel like you are eating more.

    So now we have our sauce layered around and then what I would do is just take one nice big size of the artichoke and place it right down in he middle here as a top garnish. Then we can sprinkle the top with some of the H.

    T. Traders pine nuts, enjoy.