Butter-Poached Halibut Sacchetti with Pickled Cabbage & Chives
This recipe serves 2 to 4.
Important note: Sacchetti will always cook unevenly. If you’re not a fan of some areas being a little more “al dente,” swap this shape for ravioli, mezzelune, triangoli, etc.
For the pasta dough
This amount of dough will yield approximately 25 sacchetti. You’ll likely have some leftover filling, so feel free to make a larger batch of dough if desired.
250 grams ‘00’ or all-purpose flour
50 grams semolina or semola rimacinata flour*
125 grams eggs (about 2 large eggs and 1 egg yolk)
25 grams (2 tablespoons) Kerrygold unsalted butter, melted and cooled
20 ml (2 tablespoons) water
Make the pasta dough by hand according to the “well method.” Alternatively, pulse the ingredients together in a food processor until the mixture resembles large couscous. Knead the dough until smooth, firm, and springy, about 10 minutes. Wrap tightly in plastic and allow it to rest at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
*If semolina is unavailable, use the same weight in ‘00’ or all-purpose flour.
For the filling
350 grams (¾ lb) halibut or cod fillet, any skin removed
450 grams (2 cups) Kerrygold unsalted butter
1-2 medium shallots, peeled and cut into large pieces
1-2 sprigs tarragon (optional)
1 medium Yukon gold or other waxy potato
60 grams (¼ cup) crème fraîche or sour cream
5 grams (1-2 tablespoons) minced chives
Squeeze of lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
Cut the potato in half crosswise and submerge it in a pot of cold salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 20 minutes. While still warm, remove the skin and pass through a ricer or mash with a fork. Spread the mashed potato out on a paper towel-lined baking sheet and allow to cool completely. Weigh out 100 grams (⅔ cup) for the filling.
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Pat the fish dry with paper towels and season generously with salt and pepper.
Melt the butter over medium-low heat in an oven-proof saucepan that’s large enough to fit the fish but small enough to cover it by at least two thirds (you may need a little more butter).
Add the shallot(s) and tarragon, if using, followed by the fish. Spoon some of the melted butter over the fish to coat.
Transfer the fish to the oven for about 15 minutes (or roughly 10 minutes per ½ inch of thickness), until just cooked through. Allow the fish to cool slightly, then flake with a fork (be careful of the hot pan!). Note: Leftover poaching butter can be strained, refrigerated, and used for other seafood dishes.
Add the flaked fish and the shallot pieces to a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Then, in a large bowl, gently fold the fish together with the potato, crème fraîche, minced chives, and a bit of lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer the filling to a bowl or piping bag and refrigerate until ready to use.
For the pickled cabbage
This makes a decent amount of pickled cabbage so you can halve the recipe if desired.