Porcini-Crusted Halibut With Cabernet Vinegar Sauce


  • 4 8-ounce halibut filet portions
  • 2 ounces dried porcini mushrooms
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil (grape seed, peanut or canola)
  • 2 shallots, peeled and finely diced
  • 1/2 cup Cabernet wine
  • 1/2 cup Cabernet vinegar
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 pound heirloom potatoes (small and mixed varieties)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Spread dried porcini mushrooms on a cookie sheet and dry further in a 250-degree oven for about 15 minutes or until brittle. Allow to cool and pulverize to a fine powder in a blender. Set aside.
  2. In a non-reactive saucepan, combine shallots and red wine, along with a good pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and reduce until about 2 tablespoons remain. Add Cabernet vinegar and reduce again until almost dry (about 1-2 tablespoons). Remove from heat for a moment. Return pan to very low heat and begin adding butter one tablespoon at a time, whisking continuously. Adjust seasoning and set aside.
  3. Scrub and cut potatoes in half. Season potatoes with salt and pepper, toss in oil and put cut side down on baking dish and roast in a 450-degree oven.
  4. Dredge halibut filets in porcini powder, season with salt and pepper. Sear filet in oil in a hot heavy saute pan. Put pan in the oven and finish, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Remove everything from oven and plate fish with potatoes and sauce. Seasonal steamed vegetables such as Swiss chard, peas, spinach or asparagus are recommended as an accompaniment.

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