4 fresh mullet, about 1 pound each, cleaned and scaled
Red pepper flakes, salt and black pepper, to taste
Extra virgin olive oil, as needed
4 -8 large whole leaves kale or collards, blanched 30 seconds and refreshed in ice water
2 cups oven dried tomato, sliced thin (see recipe below)
4 sprigs each oregano and rosemary
1 orange peel, trimmed of pith and cut into thin 1 1/2” strips, juice reserved
1 lemon peel, trimmed of pith and cut into thin 1 1/2”1strips, juice reserved
1 onion, peeled and cut into 1/4” dice
2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4” dice
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup clam juice or fish stock
2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
4 large sheets parchment paper
2 pounds ripe tomatoes
Fine sea salt
1. Rinse fish well with cold water, pat dry and season liberally inside and out with red pepper flakes, salt and fresh ground black pepper.
2. Prepare oven-dried tomatoes: Trim stem ends from the Roma tomatoes and cut into four lengthwise slices. Arrange the tomato slices on a silpat or parchment lined baking sheets. (Make sure they’re not touching each other). Sprinkle lightly with sea salt. Bake 4 to 6 hours at 200F until the tomatoes are shriveled and dried out, but still moist enough to bend without breaking. Cool completely and store in an airtight container until use.
3. Peel, trim and slice lemon and orange zest. Blanch 30 seconds. Refresh with ice water. Blanch the collards and kale. Refresh in ice water.
4. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Brush a piece of parchment with olive oil. Place kale or collards over the parchment to make a bed for the fish. Sprinkle an even bed of diced onion and carrot pieces on top of the kale or collards. Place a mullet over the vegetables. Fill the cavity with oven-dried tomato, oregano, rosemary and a little of the citrus peel. Artistically scatter a quarter of the garlic and more dried tomato and citrus peel over the top of the fish. Moisten with a teaspoon each of the reserved lemon and orange juice, a splash of clam juice and some olive oil. Sprinkle sliced basil on top and repeat with remaining mullets and fillings. Fold up the parchment packet and close the edges by pleating and folding them over several times to seal completely. Place the parchment packages on top of a metal rack on a baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
5. Open parchment packages tableside to allow the full aroma to delight your guests before they devour this delicious meal. (Watch out for steam burns.)
Oven-Dried Tomatoes Directions: Trim stem ends from the tomatoes and cut in half lengthwise.
Arrange the tomatoes, cut side up on a silpat or parchment lined baking sheets. (Make sure they’re not touching each other). Sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
Bake 4 hours to overnight at 200F until the tomatoes are shriveled and dried out, but still moist enough to bend without breaking. Cool completely and store in an airtight container until use.
Recipe found here: Dinner and a Movie: The Wedding Singer: Mullet
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