FLOUNDER “A LA MEUNIÈRE” (WITH SALTINE CRACKERS)
© 2015 All Rights Reserved by Norman & Janet Van Aken
There are some recipes that rightfully last lifetimes… that span not only generations but centuries. This is one of them. It isn’t because they are clever… it is because the are logical and beautiful. The delicate perfection of pristine fish is not something we have recently discovered. Maybe it is the fishermen and women of the world we should thank first. The nearly innate understanding of a very few ingredients is the cornerstone of a preparation like a fish done “a la Meunière”. The words themselves harken back to much earlier times. Times when town folk knew that the flour they used to make ‘the staff of life’ often came from a local miller. This dish came along for me when I was just learning to cook … when we were literally soaking in the history of classic French cuisine. I am indebted. (Minus the Saltines…)
Yield: 2 Servings
2 fillets of flounder weighing about 5-6 ounces each
1/2 Cup whole milk
enough flour to dredge well, … about 1 Cup but don’t cut yourself short on this. The dish is named for this ingredient.
1/4 Cup or slightly less of clarified butter, (the size of the pan helps determine this)
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
2 1/2 Tablespoons of whole butter
2 Tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 Cup of parsley, cleaned and chopped
Tablespoons of peeled cucumber, peeled or not according to your preference
1/2 Cup (or more if desired) of Saltine Crackers or other, broken into crouton size shapes
Place the filleted flounder in the milk and let it soak about 10 minutes. This aids in giving the fish a nice color. Remove the fish from the milk and dredge the flounder in the flour. When you are ready to cook shake off all excess flour.
Heat a sauté pan over medium heat for a minute, then add the clarified butter
Gently place the floured fillet into the hot pan.
Cook for 3-5 minutes or until there's a nice golden-brown color, then turn if over and carefully flip it over.
Cook another few minutes or until that side is golden-brown also and the fish is just cooked through.
You can take a knife or a spatula and carefully ‘peek’ into the interior to see if it is opaque..which it needs to be.
Remove fish from pan and place it on a warm plate.
Discard the spent butter but no need to clean out the pan. Quickly add the whole butter to the pan and swirl it
around to melt it.. Cook the butter until it turns slightly brown.
Now add the lemon juice and chopped parsley to the hot butter. Shake the pan. Add the cucumbers too.
Spoon the sauce over the fish. Scatter the crackers over the sauce. Serve with extra lemon on the side if you like.