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Poached Halibut With Lemon Herb Sauce

1 pound halibut fillet or steak 1" thick -- cut 4 serving pieces
1 lemon
2 ounces fresh herb sprigs (parsley, dill, chives and/or chervil)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 bay leaf

Seafood Alternatives: snapper, grouper, tilapia

Rinse the fish and pat dry. Cut about 1 inch off the end of the lemon and reserve; squeeze the juice from the rest of the lemon. Mince enough of the herb leaves to make about 1/3 cup; reserve the remaining sprigs.

Put 2 to 3 inches of water in a broad, shallow pan. Add the lemon piece, reserved herb sprigs, salt, peppercorns and bay leaf to the water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, add the fish pieces and simmer until the fish is opaque through the thickest part (cut to test), 8 to 10 minutes for fish 1 inch thick. Tranfer the fish to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

Ladle 1 cup of the poaching liquid into a small saucepan and boil over high heat until reduced by half, 1 to 2 minutes. (Remaining cooking liquids can be frozen for up to 3 months.) Stir in the lemon juice and chopped herbs and taste the sauce for seasoning, adding more salt or pepper to taste.

Arrange the halibut on 4 plates, spoon the lemon herb sauce over and serve immediately.

This recipe yields 4 servings.



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