In my last blog entry I looked into what wines pair well with spicy food.  This time I’m taking a different approach. I’m going to describe a meal I made recently and let Carolyn pick the wines.

The Meal: I went to our local great fish shop in search of a simple nice piece of salmon.  But they know me well and know my fondness for experimenting a bit. I left with two 1.5 pound Branzino.  Gutted, scaled heads on.

On the way home I picked up cauliflower, red and yellow sweet cherry tomatoes, lemons  and some fresh Mozzerella. From my garden came rosemary and basil.

I rinsed the fish and left it out while making the other preparations (ideally at least 45 mins.)  With about 20 mins to spare I heated the oven to 450. During that time I halved the tomatoes, tore the basil, diced the mozerella and added some home-roasted red peppers I had in the fridge.  All this went into a bowl with salt, pepper and olive oil mixed gently and left on the counter. Decided to reduce some balsamic in a little pot over a low flame to drizzle over the tomatoes at the table.

Rinsed the cauliflower, dried it off and rubbed it hard with a couple heads of garlic.  The garlic should shred a bit as you rub. Then I stemmed the cauliflower and broke it into large florets and put them in a roasting pan.  I seasoned the cauliflower with olive oil, salt and pepper and tossed well to coat. The cauliflower should be spread in a single layer in a roasting pan

I seasoned the fish inside and out with salt and pepper and put some lemon slices and rosemary in the body cavities.  Then I put the cauliflower and fish in the 450 oven for about 20/25 mins. They both seem to take about the same amount of time.  Each should be slightly charred before you take the out. Here’s the end result:

The fish had crispy skin and was moist and flaky inside.  The cauliflower sweet, dense and a little crunchy. The tomatoes, peppers, mozzarella amd basil tasted of summer with some sweetness from the reduced balsamic.

Ok:  Carolyn, the wines are up to you!