Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Blackened Cod Sandwiches with Radicchio Slaw

The blackening method of cooking fish (or chicken) adds smoky depth to the meat with aromatic seasoning, including plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Quick cooking in a hot pan with little oil sears the outside with robust flavor, while keeping the inside moist and tender.

Instead of cabbage, for this recipe I used radicchio—a peppery flavored variety of chicory—to make a simple, fresh slaw for the sandwiches. Its deep reddish-purple head resembles purple cabbage but its taste is reminiscent of hearty greens.

And instead of mayo alone, kick it up a little with chipotle chile and adobo sauce—one of the easiest (and tastiest) sandwich spreads you can make in less than a minute.

2 servings


For the Slaw
  • 1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup thinly sliced radicchio
  • 2 tbsp thinly sliced green bell pepper
  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced
Prepared Slaw Ingredients
For the Sandwiches
  • 2 tbsp light mayonnaise
  • 1 small chipotle chile in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp adobo sauce
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp chile powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • sea salt
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 5-oz skinless cod filets, about 1/3-inch thick
  • 2 sandwich rolls, halved and lightly toasted

For the Slaw
  1. Combine the vinegar, oil, and mustard in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Combine the radicchio, bell pepper, cilantro, and scallion in a medium bowl. Add the dressing and toss well to combine. Let stand while the fish cooks.

Ready for Dressing
Dressed Slaw
For the Sandwiches
  1. Combine the mayonnaise, chipotle chile, and adobo sauce in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Combine the black pepper, chile powder, and cumin in a small bowl. Rub the spice mixture all over the fish, coating both sides well and pressing to adhere.
  3. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and brush with 2 teaspoons olive oil. Season the fish with salt and sear until beginning to blacken on the bottom, about 3 minutes. (Reduce the heat to medium if the spices begin to burn.
  4. Turn and sear the other side until blackened and the fish is just cooked through, about 2 minutes longer, depending on thickness.
Chipotle Mayo
Blackening Spices
Seasoned Fish
Beginning to Cook
Mayo Spread
To serve, spread the chipotle-mayo sauce on all 4 cut sides of the rolls and lay a filet on each bottom half. Mound the slaw on top of the fish and cover with the top halves. Serve right away.

Blackened Cod Sandwiches with Radicchio Slaw

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