Monkfish Alla Pizzaiola

"A recipe from Chef Luciana Spuria of Le Virtu in Philadelphia. A native of Abruzzi, she knows her fish."
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  • Combine olive oil in frying pan with 2 slices fresh green hot pepper, and one clove garlic. When oil is medium hot, add fish.
  • Sprinkle each piece of fish with salt and white pepper and cook about two minutes (more if fish steaks are thick).
  • Flip the steaks, sprinkle with oregano.
  • Let the temperature in the pan return to medium hot. Add capers and cherry tomatoes (and caper berry if using). Add parsley.
  • Add shellfish and white wine. Cover and cook until shellfish open. Remove cover and let the liquid in the pan evaporate. (Do not reduce the flame).

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<p>I have always loved to cook. When I was little, I cooked with my Grandmother who had endless patience and extraordinary skill as a baker. And I cooked with my Mother, who had a set repertoire, but taught me many basics. Then I spent a summer with a French cousin who opened up a whole new world of cooking. And I grew up in New York City, which meant that I was surrounded by all varieties of wonderful food, from great bagels and white fish to all the wonders of Chinatown and Little Italy, from German to Spanish to Mexican to Puerto Rican to Cuban, not to mention Cuban-Chinese. And my parents loved good food, so I grew up eating things like roasted peppers, anchovies, cheeses, charcuterie, as well as burgers and the like. In my own cooking I try to use organics as much as possible; I never use canned soup or cake mix and, other than a cheese steak if I'm in Philly or pizza by the slice in New York, I don't eat fast food. So, while I think I eat and cook just about everything, I do have friends who think I'm picky--just because the only thing I've ever had from McDonald's is a diet Coke (and maybe a frie or two). I have collected literally hundreds of recipes, clipped from the Times or magazines, copied down from friends, cajoled out of restaurant chefs. Little by little, I am pulling out the ones I've made and loved and posting them here. Maybe someday, every drawer in my apartment won't crammed with recipes. (Of course, I'll always have those shelves crammed with cookbooks.) I'm still amazed and delighted by the friendliness and the incredible knowledge of the people here. 'Zaar has been a wonderful discovery for me.</p>
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