Crispy Za'atar Fish with Israeli Couscous, Swiss Chard, and Feta

 

 

 

Adapted from a recipe by Rhoda Boone, Epicurious January 2015



Za'atar is a pre-made spice blend of aromatic dried thyme or oregano, sumac, and nutty sesame seeds. Recipes for Za'atar, varies by origin. Here, it flavors fish fillets served over a warm salad of wilted chard, crisp pomegranate seeds, briny olives, and salty feta.

1 cup Israeli or pearl couscous
1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
2 1/2 tablespoons med robust UP Extra-Virgin olive oil, or Meyer Lemon, divided
Four 6-ounce arctic char or striped bass, or Salmon fillets preferably skin on (about 3/4-inch thick)
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 teaspoons Epices du Cru Za'atar seasoning (available at Liquid Gold or the Farmers Market on Saturdays.)
1 pound Swiss chard, stems cut into 1/2-inch slices, leaves roughly chopped
1/4 cup dry white wine (Pinot Grigio is a good choice)
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved lengthwise (Available at Liquid Gold)
1/2 cup crumbled feta
1/2 lemon


Preparation
In a small saucepan, cook couscous according to package directions, seasoning it with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Once cooked, drain the couscous and transfer to a warm medium bowl.
While the couscous is cooking, drizzle 1 tablespoon UP Olive Oil over both sides of fish fillets and season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Rub each side of each fillet with 1 teaspoon Za'atar.
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, and add 1 tablespoon oil. Once the oil is hot, add fish to skillet, skin-side down, and sear until skin is golden brown and crispy, 4 to 6 minutes. Flip fish and cook until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer to warm plate.
Add chard stems and wine to pan; cook for 30 seconds. Stir in chard leaves, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to skillet. Cover and cook until chard leaves are wilted, 2 to 3 minutes more.
Add chard mixture to bowl with couscous. Fold in pomegranate seeds, olives, feta, and remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil. Squeeze lemon half over the mixture and toss to combine; taste and adjust seasoning.
Divide couscous mixture among four plates and top with fish fillets, skin-side up.
Enjoy!