We tend to think of seasonal ingredients as the good stuff that we patiently wait for all year as it slowly rises from the soil and that is certainly true, but a summer staple I look forward to all year comes from the ocean—I’m talking about striped bass.
Yield: 4 servings
Bluefish, also abundant in Martha’s Vineyard waters, works well in this dish, too.
1 cup pesto
1-1/2 cups plain breadcrumbs
4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
4 8-ounce fillets striped bass or bluefish, skin on
Place pesto and breadcrumbs into two separate shallow dishes. Divide vegetable oil into two medium-size frying pans over medium-high heat. Press each portion of fish, skin side up, into pesto and then into breadcrumbs. Place fish, crumb side down, into the hot oiled frying pans and sear 3 minutes.
Turn fish and cook 4 to 5 minutes. Arrange on serving plates and top with Tomato Vinaigrette.
4 medium tomatoes, cut into half-inch chunks
1 small red onion, diced
3 scallions, finely sliced
6 fresh basil leaves, cut into thin strips
1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Combine all recipe ingredients in a non-aluminum bowl and let stand, covered, at room temperature 30 minutes.
Adapted from Doug Hewson, Mediterranean Restaurant, Matha’s Vineyard, MA
Annie B. Copps is a senior editor at Yankee Magazine. Annie oversees the magazine’s food coverage, both as an editor and as a contributor of feature stories and columns.