This delicate fish dish is a surprising treat at the end of a long day. Turbot is found in salt waters of both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. It is also known as flounder, brill, fluke, and plaice. It is a member of the flatfish family, which also contains sole and halibut. Any of those would make fine substitutions in this dish. Given the southern French origin of this dish, it is important to note that the word “turbot” in French refers to a flavorful, diamond-shaped fish, which is different from the Pacific flatfish known as turbot in the United States.
1/2 cup almond flour, or unbleached, all-purpose flour 1/4 tsp grey sea salt or other sea salts Freshly ground black pepper, to taste Dash crushed red pepper 4 (1/3-lb) turbot fillets, or other white fish 4 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided 2 (1-lb) bags frozen yellow and zucchini squash slices, thawed and drained Juice of 1 lemon 1 cup Homemade Seafood Stock (p. 37), or water 2 sprigs fresh thyme 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar 1 bunch fresh watercress, washed thoroughly and trimmed
Place flour on a plate. Add salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper, and stir to combine. Dip turbot pieces in mixture to coat, and shake off excess. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large, wide, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add fish and brown on both sides (about 2 minutes per side).
Add zucchini and squash, and pour in lemon juice and stock. Add thyme to the pot, cover, and allow to simmer for 5–10 minutes, or until fish is cooked through and squash is tender. Remove and discard thyme.
Whisk balsamic vinegar with remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil in a small bowl until incorporated.
Place fish fillets on top of watercress and scatter zucchini and squash around the sides.
Toss watercress with balsamic vinegar dressing, taste, and season with salt and pepper as needed. Place watercress on the bottom of a large serving platter or divide among 4 individual plates.
Watercress contains more vitamin A, B1, B6, and beta-carotene than broccoli, apples, and tomatoes. To include more nutrients in your diet, try using watercress as a “bed” or accompaniment for fish dishes as they do in Greece and North Africa. It can also be added to sandwiches or used in place of lettuce in salads.
Embracing the Mediterranean-style eating pattern is one of the best ways to become the healthiest possible version of yourself. Don’t wait to get started. Grab some fresh ingredients and take charge of your health today.
A graduate of Cornell University, Amy is considered a culinary thought leader who enjoys changing the way we think about food and the people who create it. Amy is a food historian, culinary anthropologist, and Mediterranean Diet advocate who makes frequent appearances on numerous television and radio programs both in the United States and abroad, including FOX TV, ABC, CBS, NBC, the Hallmark Channel, Nile TV, the Travel Channel, Martha Stewart Living Radio, and Abu Dhabi Television.