Butter poached monkfish became a favorite of mine during a trip to Disney a few years back. This is a simple cooking method for fish that will become a favorite of yours soon. Sure, a lot of people butter poach lobster, but you can butter poach any type of fish.
I bet I know what you are thinking, how can you butter poach fish? Butter poaching is a very easy method of cooking fish. This may seem like a difficult way to cook, but I promise, this is simple cooking which will give you maximum flavor. I like to season my butter with a touch of lemon juice, and a small shallot diced up. The fish cooks in the seasoned liquid and it tastes heavenly.
Butter poached lobster is a classic dish you will find in many expensive restaurants. Monkfish is also known as poor man’s lobster. It is a tender white fish that has tastes a bit like lobster. I have gotten monkfish at the Asian market, but I have also poached cod and halibut with great results. This has become one of my favorite ways to prepare fish.
The fish cooks very gently, and it becomes flavorful and buttery. I think it is almost a fool proof way to make fish by cooking it like this. The fish cooks gently and it is hard to overcook. For this recipe I like to use unsalted butter. I want to be able to control the level of salt when the fish is cooked. I like to finish this recipe with a touch of Fleur de Sel or a touch of sea salt. I think both of these two types of salt add something extra special to the fish.
When I butter poach fish I like to serve it up with a light side dish like roasted asparagus, or perhaps a salad. I think if you try butter poaching fish just once, you will be cooking it like this more often.
Butter Poached Fish
- 12 ounces fish
- 6 ounces unsalted butter (divided use)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons finely diced shallots
- finely chopped fresh herbs such as chives - optional
- Heat two tablespoons of the butter in a medium sized sauce pan over medium heat. Add chopped shallots and cook until they are translucent. Make sure that the butter does not brown. Add lemon juice and remaining butter. When the butter has melted, add the fish. Gently place the fish into the pan. The cooking liquid should cover the fish 2/3 up the side of the fish. Turn the temperature high and allow the fish to cook for three minutes once the cooking liquid begins to boil. Turn the heat down and allow to cook on low for an additional minute.