Smoke and Leaves

smoked bluefish

Mike and I are big fans of a good main dish salad, but we don’t often do them during the winter months. I got an idea in my head, though, after a recent visit to Mercato del Mare, to put together a salad inspired by a dish we had at B&G Oysters last year.

Dinner:  December 15, 2009

The star was a chunk of their gorgeous house-smoked bluefish, skinned and sliced thin on the bias, served on a bed of baby winter greens, with crisp watermelon radishes and tart pickled fennel strewn about. To give the salad a bit more heft, I added some wedges of hard-cooked egg, and I drizzled it all with a dressing made of creme fraiche, fresh lemon juice, freshly grated horseradish, and a blob of grainy mustard. Colorful and surprisingly hearty, this salad was just the what I needed at the end of a long, hectic day.

9 thoughts on “Smoke and Leaves

  1. Hi! Just wanted to say all of us at Farm Fresh RI really love your blog, and appreciate all the props you give the Pawtucket Winter Market.

    Coincidentally, at the winter market, we just brought on a smoked fish vendor, Dave’s Ribs (, out of Cape Cod. They smoke their own bluefish and cod caught right off the cape. Be sure to check it out!

  2. Jennifer Hess says:

    Eric – Thank you! And what fun news about the new vendor – I look forward to checking out his offerings!

    erik – Har har ;)

  3. I was just in RI last weekend. Some good food in Providence, which has changed a great deal since I was at college there.

    My Mom was a huge fan of the salad-as-entrée, and I’m coming around to it as well- though, like you, it seems better suited to warmer weather. And lunch rather more than dinner. But I loves me some smoked bluefish.

  4. Jennifer Hess says:

    Peter – Aw, I wish I would have known – would have been nice to clink glasses with you. :) And yes, I’m not sure when you were at school here, but we hear it has changed dramatically. There are great things happening here food-wise, and more yet to come. And it reached a balmy 40-something degrees here on Tuesday, so the salad was a nice change of pace from the richer fare we’ve been eating most nights. Plus, we love some smoked bluefish.

  5. Jennifer, you’ve inspired me to finally buy some bluefish to cook at home. Plan to serve it with a side of roasted winter veggies, pour a glass of wine, and wait for the big snow to hit DC!

  6. Jennifer Hess says:

    Niki – Thank you! I love bluefish any way, and it’s particularly tasty when smoked. So versatile, too – it’s great on bagels or flaked and added to deviled eggs or turned into a creamy dip or spread.

    Lydia – The offerings at the market just keep getting better and better! We are so lucky to have such a wonderful resource.

    CGDC – Oh, yum, that sounds fabulous! Stay safe and warm and enjoy – cheers!

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