Pan-Seared Halibut with Fresh Matsutakes and Sea Scallops

Pan-Seared Halibut with Fresh Matsutakes and Sea Scallops

Every now and then there appears food that is so intrinsically beautiful that you almost cannot eat it.  I am not talking about fancy cupcakes or sugar sculptures here, just stunningly lovely raw ingredients.  Lately I have been a little obsessed with making sea scallop ceviche–slivers of raw scallop, simply tossed with fresh lime juice, crushed garlic, a little olive oil and aleppo pepper.  Maybe some cilantro, maybe not.  Just stare at it while the scallops shift from milky-blonde to a pearlized white, then scoop it up with a spoon…I digress.  I really want to talk about halibut and matsutakes.  I was shopping at our local Vitamin Cottage–which sells organic food, in addition to the vitamins of its title–and found a singular package of fresh matsutakes, firm and bright and with no price in sight.  I threw caution to the wind and purchased the mushrooms (they were steep–let’s leave it at that), and to celebrate their seasonal awesomeness and gilded status, I lightly sauteed the bunch with a piece of wild halibut, some sea scallops, and a light sherry pan sauce.  Beauty:

Really fabulous, and too simple for a recipe, per se.  Just lightly dust the halibut with some cornstarch, and heat some olive oil over medium-high in a large skillet.  Sear it well on each side and sprinkle with sea salt and white pepper.  Toss in the scallops and sear on one side, then flip them and add the mushrooms.  Deglaze the pan with a half cup of dry sherry and let it cook down until slightly thickened.  Serve immediately.  Share if you are really nice.

Today we are having an unseasonably warm April day, topping out at an expected 80 degrees (freeze warning tomorrow, however…), so I went out and watered our little greenhouse and snapped some pics.  Here are some future food projects in the making, all beautiful:

Lettuce that wintered over
Cilantro that wintered over–more ceviche!

Thanks for reading,


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  1. Oh this does look wonderful. I am so jealous of your greenhouse but with my black thumb I wouldn't be able to grow anything if I had one. I can't wait to see what you grow.

  2. My mouth is watering Angela! I think I could drink that sauce. And I'm completely jealous that you just had an 80 degree day. What I would do for that.

  3. Ang, today it is snowing! Didn't last long.

  4. That photo is amazing. I agree that sometimes the simple dishes bring out the best flavor and allow the few ingredients to shine. I'm in love with that dish (but then I love all three main ingredients).

    I'm also jealous of your greenhouse. Lettuce already. Wow.

  5. Me too–hard to go wrong with those three things! Halibut is a personal favorite.

  6. Beth Jackson Klosterboer

    Oh, how cool is your greenhouse. I've used a really small one with some success and would love to have a big one like yours. We don't have the right yard for it, unfortunately. I hope you have a bumper crop this summer.

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