TV Tuesday #2 – Poached Halibut with Fennel Cucumber Mint Salad

There are times during the week where, despite your efforts to meal plan and batch cook, you are stumped to get something healthy and fast on the table. In those moments, it’s good to have a few recipes on hand that you almost always have the ingredients you need. I like to collect these types of recipes for those times when I’m so hungry I can’t think straight. Ever get like that? When the world becomes foggy and there is only one focus?

I get like that more often than I’d like to admit.

“Go To” Meals Planned In

Everyone should have at least one or two of these types of meals in their meal plan for the week. It’s like the emergency plan, the parachute of food! If you know you can get dinner on the table in 15 minutes, there’s far less of a chance of ordering in pizza or something else that lacks nutrition.

No Inspiration?

What if you have a little more time and lots of groceries but zero inspiration? I know that’s a common complaint from the emails I receive. I think that might be worse than not having time. If you’re inspired and are short on time, your mind goes into action and finds a solution. But if lack of inspiration is the problem, it becomes more challenging. I like to suggest picking 10 or so whole food blogs that tend to showcase meals your family enjoys. Use them for inspiration. After all, that’s the reason food bloggers spend a scary amount of hours each week cooking and writing. To provide YOU with inspiration.

My New Secret Solution to Inspiring Meals

Still nothing? Ah ha! I found a solution. At least one that worked for me. I can’t vouch for you, but I can tell you how excited I am that this will be my new go to for inspiration. I have had this book on my wish list with Amazon for some time and had not gotten around to buying it, up until about 4 days ago that is.

I don’t buy cookbooks willy nilly. I am very choosy. If I buy a book, I want it to be the kind of book I’m in everyday. The kind of book I cherish and refer to and never get sick of. So I am slow in making a decision. I even try to get them from the library first, so that I can try it out. I usually know within a couple of days if it’s a keeper. I knew with this book in an hour. This book is not new, it’s been around about 4 years and many of you may already have it on your bookshelf. If not, I cannot recommend it enough.

The Flavor Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity, Based on the Wisdom of America’s Most Imaginative Chefs by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg is brilliant! It’s organized alphabetically like a dictionary, except for ingredients. Looking up “red cabbage” will leave you with a huge list of spices, meat, fish and vegetables that pair well with it.

There are so many options, in fact, that you’re sure to have at least some of them in your fridge. It’s that easy. Pick one thing you need to use up before it goes bad, or one thing you feel like eating (but don’t know what to do with it), look it up and marry it with the things on the list that you have in your house. It even gives you recommended cooking techniques!

For example, red cabbage can be braised, marinaded (like cole slaw) or raw. A quick look at this well laid out reference might create a side dish such as braised cabbage with bacon and apples finished with Balsamic and crumbled blue cheese. Still no inspiration?! No problem, at the end of the list is a section entitled “Flavor Affinities” that does the pairing for you with the best flavor combinations.

Not only does The Flavor Bible include specific ingredients, but flavors such as bitter and sourness, or seasons. What fruits, veggies or meats are best in summer or winter, and which types of cooking techniques lend best to those season. There are listings for wine and cheese and loads more information. There’s so much information in fact you would almost think it overwhelming, but it’s so beautifully laid out that this reference material has you in and out in no time. I can’t recommend The Flavor Bible enough!

Check out the latest episode of TV Tuesday to see how I used The Flavor Bible to make Poached Halibut with Fennel Cucumber Mint Salad.


Poached Halibut with Fennel Cucumber Mint Salad

  • 2 Halibut fillets (or enough for your group)
  • 4 cups of water (approx)
  • Fennel fonds (optional)
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 8 peppercorns
  • 8 parsley sprigs
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp salt (depends on the amount of water in the pan)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

Fill a skillet or saute pan with 2 inches of water. Add a few fennel fronds, fennel seeds, peppercorns, parsley, salt and minced garlic to the water. Bring the water to a simmer and allow the water to become fragrant. About 5 minutes.  Lay the pieces of halibut in the water. The water should completely cover the fish. Add more water if necessary. The halibut will need to cook for 8-10 minutes per inch of thickness. Mine we’re under just an inch, making the cooking time about 7 minutes. The fennel broth will be enough for at least 4 fillets.

Fennel Cucumber Salad

  • 1 whole fennel
  • 1 english cucumber
  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • good quality olive oil (one you could drink by the spoonful)

Cut off the fronds of the fennel and slice it in half  and remove the hard root end. Using a mandoline, slice the fennel to a 1/16″. Repeat with the cucumber. Add the sliced fennel, cucumber and mint in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil to coat and add the juice of a lemon. Season well with salt and pepper.  Serve with halibut and the Lemon Yogurt Dressing.

Lemon Yogurt Dressing

  • 1/2 plain yogurt ( I used a 6% )
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1-2 tsp honey
  • salt and pepper to taste

Add all the ingredients to a bowl and stir until combined. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle over halibut and Fennel Cucumber Salad.



If you’re loving Beyond The Peel TV, we’d love if you shared it, and helped someone else learn how to make fast, delicious, whole food meals. If you’re interested in The Flavor Bible, you can check out a sample on Amazon here.

I’m sharing this with Real Food 101, Mangia Monday, Monday Mania, My Meatless Monday Fat Tuesday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, Tasty TuesdaysA Little Birdie Told MeThese Chicks CookAllergy Free Wednesday, Cast Party WednesdayTasty AlternativeWhat’s Cooking WednesdayReal Food Wednesday, Pennywise Platter ThursdaySimple Lives Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Food Friday, Friday Food Flicks, Freaky Friday, Fight Back Friday, and Foodie Friday.

26 Responses to TV Tuesday #2 – Poached Halibut with Fennel Cucumber Mint Salad

  1. Joanne March 27, 2012 at 11:21 am #

    Poaching fish is definitely a great, easy way to get a healthy meal on the table in almost no time flat!

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

      Joanne, I couldn’t agree more. It’s a good one to have in the ol’ bag of tricks.

  2. Jay March 27, 2012 at 2:36 pm #

    Good stuff guys. If I may suggest, poaching the fish in either a fume (fish stock) or white wine. Great photo too.

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 8:40 pm #

      Thanks for the suggestion Jay. I will try that next time.

  3. Koko March 27, 2012 at 3:18 pm #

    Lovely recipe + video, France! I had halibut last night, but I never poach it…I’d really like to try cooking it this way!

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 8:48 pm #

      Koko! For some reason I thought you were Vegan….Let me know how it turns out for you if you decide to try poaching it.

  4. Steve March 27, 2012 at 6:21 pm #

    I’ve told the {Home Ec} teacher (at the school I work) about your website, and the students have been using some of your recipes in class. They seem to be enjoying them.

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 8:39 pm #

      Thanks Steve. That’s so fantastic. Most of us don’t learn about healthy eating until late into our adult lives. That just made my whole day!

  5. Mary March 27, 2012 at 6:39 pm #

    This sounds like such a lovely meal. It looks beautiful and uses fresh ingredients and healthy cooking techniques. I’m sure it is delicious as well. This one is a keeper. Have a great day…Blessings…Mary

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 8:38 pm #

      Hi Mary, Isn’t it great to have a quick go to meal that requires no thinking. What’s yours?

  6. The Café Sucré Farine March 27, 2012 at 7:01 pm #

    Frances, I almost always say out loud “oh my goodness!” when I click to your page, today is no exception! This sounds/looks incredibly delicious – I will try it out on my family soon!

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 8:37 pm #

      Chris, thank you for stopping by. I hope you do and feedback is always appreciated!

  7. Kelly @ Inspired Edibles March 27, 2012 at 8:24 pm #

    Thank you for sharing the Flavour Bible – sounds like a wonderful resource. I love the simplicity and levity of this recipe, and the salad… wow, absolutely gorgeous. Aren’t mandoline’s the best? The fresh mint sounds like the perfect pairing.

    Lovely nails Madame ;-).

    • France Morissette March 27, 2012 at 8:36 pm #

      You always say the most lovely things Kelly. Thank you for stopping by!

  8. Katie March 28, 2012 at 1:31 am #

    Thanks for sharing about the flavor bible. I love getting cookbooks from the library too :) Your halibut looks delicious, by the way :)

  9. mjskit March 28, 2012 at 2:02 am #

    Great post! I love your discussion on how to have at least one easy meal during the week. I agree – that’s a must. One thing that I do is make one, if not two of my weekend meals large enough to have leftovers for another meal. W had leftover tonight! Your quick meal of fish and salad sounds very tasty and easy! I especially love the salad with the lemon yogurt dressing!

  10. Miz Helen March 30, 2012 at 9:10 pm #

    Hi France,
    This is beautiful Poached Halibut. We have mint everywhere right now and this would be a great salad for us to try. This is a very simple and tasty meal. Hope you have a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  11. Michelle @ The Willing Cook March 31, 2012 at 3:15 pm #

    Looks beautiful and delicious! I love all your tips for getting out of a cooking funk. Thanks for sharing it this week at Allergy-Free Wednesdays. Hope to see you back again next week. Have a great weekend!

    ~Michelle, AFW Hostess

  12. Jenn/Rook No. 17 April 2, 2012 at 9:27 pm #

    Looks like an incredible combination of flavors! I just tried Hake for the first time this weekend and am thinking that it might be a good fish for this dish as well. I’m pinning and featuring your recipe (on FB) today. Can’t wait to try it myself!

    • France Morissette April 2, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

      Thanks so much for the love Jenn! Let me know how the Hake turns out. I’m curious.

  13. Amber April 3, 2012 at 8:35 pm #

    Hi France,

    I’m soooo getting that book! Thanks for such a fantastic reference. And I love watching videos. So fun to see you in the kitchen! And wonderful, healthy, healing recipe. Thank you!!


  14. Amber April 4, 2012 at 6:10 pm #

    Hi There France,

    I featured your awesome recipe this week on Allergy-Free Wednesdays. Your recipe and other highlights can be seen here:

    Please join us again this week for more allergy-free fun and inspiration.

    Be Well,

    • France Morissette April 4, 2012 at 8:19 pm #

      Thanks so much Amber!

  15. Ruth April 11, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    I picked up some halibut and used your search feature and found this wonderful, easy and delicious recipe – I was so pleased with the results as “cooking adventures” are new to me.  I did some substitutions with what I had on hand and it worked so well.  I loved having the video, thank you France

    • beyondthepeel April 11, 2012 at 5:32 pm #

      Hi Ruth. Glad to here you found it simple and delish. That’s the perfect combination if you ask me.


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