Last spring, one of my most memorable meals was at a modern Czech restaurant called Eska in Prague’s Karlin district. My mind keeps coming back to one dish I enjoyed there: clean-tasting locally caught trout bathed in an herbaceous dill sauce. I did my best to re-create it here, using cod*, a local fish, in place of trout and adding sorrel leaves for a fresh, slightly bitter, lemony note. I like to serve this with boiled fingerling or new potatoes, seasoned simply with olive oil or brown butter, salt, pepper and tons of chopped fresh chives. Lovage or chervil would be welcome additions.
*Note that cod is included in Red’s Best’s index of local, sustainable fish and is recognized by the NOAA as being “sustainably managed.” However, other locally sourced white fish such as hake, pollock or flounder would work well, too.
2 pounds cod fillets, cut into roughly equal size
1 cup fresh dill, packed
½ cup flat-leaf parsley, packed
Juice of half a lemon
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
1⁄8 cup water
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup red-veined sorrel leaves
Set broiler to high. Set the cod fillets on a 12- by 18-inch rimmed baking sheet and, using the tablespoon of olive oil, lightly brush each fillet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil for 12 minutes, or until the fish is barely cooked through and flakes easily.
Meanwhile, in a blender, add the dill, parsley, lemon, salt and half of the remaining olive oil. Pulse until combined, then, with blender running, add the rest of the olive oil and water in a slow stream. Blend until completely smooth.
To serve, spoon dill sauce generously over each fillet and garnish with a handful of sorrel leaves.
LUKE PYENSON is a food and travel writer, recipe developer, food stylist and photographer based in New York City. You can see examples of his work at www.lukepyenson.com.