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Seared Cod in A Rich Broth with Root Vegetables
2 ounces dried shiitake mushrooms
1 carrot -- peeled and julienned
8 ounces green beans -- or
2 cups cut green beans (1-inch)
1 medium yellow turnip -- peeled and julienned
1 medium white turnip -- peeled and julienned
4 cod fillets -- 4 ounce
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 1/2 cups mushroom broth or vegetable broth or water
10 ounces fresh pasta -- see tip
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
2 ounces enoki mushrooms (optional) -- brushed clean and cut into 1 1/2 -inch lengths
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh chives -- 1/2-inch lengths
2 tablespoons minced scallions
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Using a spice grinder, or in the work bowl of a mini-food processor, grind the shiitake mushrooms to a powder. Set aside.
Bring 1 quart of salted water to a boil. Prepare a bowl of ice water to shock the vegetables after cooking. Add the carrots and green beans to boiling water, then, after 1 minute, add the yellow and white turnips; cook another minute. Drain the vegetables and transfer to the ice bath. Drain again and set aside.
Season the cod fillets with salt and pepper and lightly dust them with the mushroom powder. Heat the oil in an oven-safe skillet (preferably nonstick) set over medium-high heat. Place the cod fillets in the pan and brown on both sides. Transfer the pan to the oven and roast until the cod fillets are cooked through, 5 minutes to 7 minutes depending on the thickness.
While the cod is cooking, bring the broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Add the pasta, the blanched vegetables, and the ginger. Simmer until the pasta is just cooked; taste a strand after 30 seconds.
Divide the broth, pasta and vegetables among 4 soup bowls, arranging the pasta in the center as a bed for the cod; place a fillet of cod in each bowl. Garnish with a small branch of enoki mushrooms, if desired, and the chives and scallions.