Celebrate with a Seafood Feast

Written By Marissa Jamison

Posted 06/05/12

Updated 06/05/12

Wine & Food

Fresh-water fish and seafood are some of the smartest, healthiest menu choices you can make, whether you’re dining at home or in your favorite restaurant. Best of all, there are as many palate-pleasing possibilities as there are fish in the sea!

Fish, like most foods, have seasons and there is a growing trend among chefs to utilize whatever type of fish is fresh at the moment rather than relying on frozen or out-of-season specialties. Here is a basic calendar:


For summer, our Biltmore chefs are focusing on halibut—mild white fish with firm flesh that flakes easily—as well as delicious recipes for scallops, trout, and the classic crab cake.



Smoked Trout Tartare with Horseradish and Dill

Serves 6–8

• 1/3 pound cold smoked trout
• 11/2 tablespoon red onions, minced
• 2 teaspoons capers, roughly chopped
• 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
• 3/4 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
• 2 teaspoons fresh parsley, chopped
• 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
• 1 tablespoon sour cream
• 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• kosher salt and cracked black pepper to taste

Remove any skin from trout. Mince trout thoroughly on a cutting board with a sharp knife. Place minced trout in a mixing bowl. Fold in remaining ingredients and season with salt and cracked black pepper.

Serving Suggestion:
Enjoy with toasted baguette slices, and fresh lemon.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Riesling.
This crisp, semi-sweet white wine displays an array of flavors and spicy aroma.


Grilled Halibut BLT

Serves 2

• 1 6-ounce halibut fillet
• Salt and pepper
• Paprika
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• ½ large ripe avocado, peeled and pitted
• ½ lemon, juiced
• 4 medium size leaves or 1 head lettuce
• ¼ cup mayonnaise
• 4 medium-thick slices sourdough bread, lightly toasted
• 2 large tomato slices
• 4 slices thick bacon, cooked until crisp

Season halibut with salt, pepper, and paprika. Add a small amount of olive oil (enough to slightly cover fish. Grill fillet on both sides, cooking until fish is done throughout; be careful not overcook. Remove from heat, divide halibut into 2 portions, and set aside.

To assemble each BLT: slice avocado and drizzle with lemon juice to prevent browning. Spread mayonnaise on two pieces of toast; add lettuce, halibut, and 1 tomato slice to each. Then stack avocado, more lettuce, tomato slice, and 2 strips of bacon. Spread mayonnaise on second piece of toast and top the sandwich. Cut BLT in two and secure each half with a toothpick.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Enjoy with our Biltmore Reserve Sonoma County “Un-oaked” Chardonnay, which is a nicely balanced, fruit-forward, refreshing wine that’s perfect for summer.


Seared Trout with Asparagus, Peas, Morel Mushrooms, and Watercress Cream Sauce

Serves 4

• 2 pounds trout fillets, skin-on
• 12 fingerling potatoes
• 8 peeled white asparagus spears
• 8 peeled green asparagus spears
• ½ pound fresh morel mushrooms
• ½ cup sweet green peas
• 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 3 bunches watercress
• 2 cups heavy cream
• 4 tablespoons grape seed oil, divided
• Several watercress leaves for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 350° F. Divide trout fillet into 4 equal portions, leaving skin on, and set aside.

Roast fingerling potatoes in oven for 15 minutes or until fork tender. Peel and blanch asparagus in salted boiling water until al dente. Saute morels with spring peas and butter until tender. Blanch, shock, then process watercress; combine with cream and 2 tablespoons grape seed oil in a blender and puree until fine.

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons grape seed oil until it smokes; carefully place trout flesh-side down and sear the fish. Finish in the oven for 10 minutes. To serve the dish, reheat the asparagus on the grill, bring watercress cream to a simmer, and reheat morels and peas and fingerling potatoes. Place the asparagus on a plate and top with morels and peas. Place the fingerlings next to the vegetables. Place trout beside the vegetables and drizzle with cream sauce. Garnish with a few watercress leaves.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Our dry, crisp, and refreshing Biltmore Sauvignon Blanc is a perfect complement to this elegant dish.


Crab Cakes

Serves 4

• 1 pound fresh lump crabmeat
• 6 scallions, sliced thinly
• ½ cup of celery, finely diced
• ½ cup red pepper, finely diced
• ¼ cup mayonnaise
• 1 egg
• 2 dashes Tabasco
• 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
• 2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
• 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
• ¼ cup breadcrumbs
• clarified butter for sautéing

Empty the crabmeat into a large pan, and pick the shells from the meat—trying not to shred the meat into a purée. Add the chopped scallions, celery, and peppers and gently fold ingredients into the crabmeat, being careful to leave the meat in large pieces. In another bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, egg, Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay seasoning, and mustard together until mixed. Add the mayonnaise mixture to the crabmeat, folding the two together until well mixed but not puréed. Sprinkle breadcrumbs in the mixture and fold together. Do not knead the mixture like bread dough. Shape meat mixture into four generous cakes and sauté in clarified butter until golden brown. Then transfer cakes to a 350° F oven for 8 to 10 minutes until done.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Estate Sparkling Brut. This sparkling wine offers delicate aromas of apple, pear, and lemon and features fine bubbles.


Cashew Crusted Scallops with Tangerines and Roasted Fennel

Serves 2

• 1 fennel bulb, cut into thin strips
• olive oil (as needed)
• salt and white pepper to taste
• 6 large diver scallop
• cashew flour
• 1 cup buttermilk
• 1 garlic clove, minced
• 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
• 1 tangerine, segmented
• ¹⁄3 cup Grand Marnier
• ¾ cup orange juice
• ¼ pound cold butter
• 7 mint leaves, shredded

Cashew Flour
• 1 cup cashews
• ½ cup all purpose flour
• ½ teaspoon salt
• ½ teaspoon white pepper
• ¹⁄8 teaspoon nutmeg

Place cashew flour ingredients in a food processor and pulse until the flour is a fine consistency. Set aside.

Place fennel in a small casserole dish. Coat with olive oil and season with salt and white pepper. Cover dish with foil and bake at 400° F until fennel is very tender, approximately one hour. Set fennel aside. Season scallops with salt and white pepper. Dredge the tops of scallops in the cashew flour, then buttermilk. Dredge scallops in cashew flour again. In a skillet, add ¼ cup of olive oil and heat over medium high heat. Place scallops, dredged side down, in the skillet and cook until crust is golden brown, approximately 2 minutes. Flip scallops over and cook an additional minute. Remove scallops from pan and set aside. Using the same skillet, add garlic and ginger and cook for 15 seconds. Add tangerines and roasted fennel. Remove skillet from heat and dilute the pan’s juices with Grand Marnier and orange juice. Place the skillet back on stove. Add scallops to the skillet and cook until liquid is reduced by 75%. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in cold butter until butter is melted into a sauce. Stir in mint and season with salt and white pepper.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Chardonnay Sur Lies. This complex white wine offers hints of pear, pineapple, and tropical fruits.


Pecan Crusted Trout


Serves 2–4

• 1 each Brown or Rainbow Trout, dressed, boned, whole
• Flour
• Salt and pepper
• Oil

Season the trout with salt and pepper. Dust with flour and sauté in a skillet with oil. Coat (skin side should be down) with pecan crust (see below). Finish cooking in a 350° oven until done (about 5 minutes). Dress with Meuniere butter (see below) and serve with a lemon wedge.

Pecan Crust
• 1 1/4 cup pecans, ground
• 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, fresh home made
• 2 teaspoons olive oil
• 1 tablespoon basil, fresh chopped
• 1 tablespoon mint, fresh chopped
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice, fresh
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Yields 1 1/2 cups.

Meuniere Butter
• 4oz butter
• 2 teaspoons parsley
• Juice from 1/4 lemon

Melt butter in saucepan until slightly brown and nutty. Add parsley and lemon juice to the melted butter. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Estate Viognier.


Prosciutto-Wrapped Wild Salmon with Mushroom Risotto

Serves 4

• 5 tablespoons butter, cold
• 1/2 white onion, diced
• 1 cup Arborio rice
• 1/2 cup Biltmore Estate Chardonnay Sur Lies
• 3 cups hot chicken broth
• 4 filets wild salmon, 7 oz. each
• 8 slices Prosciutto
• 12 fresh Shiitake mushrooms
• 8 each Chanterelles and Morels or other fresh mushrooms
• Salt
• White Pepper
• Olive Oil

Add 1 tablespoon butter and diced onion to a heavy saucepan. Cook over medium heat, without browning. Add rice and stir well to coat. Deglaze with the Chardonnay and stir using a wooden spoon or spatula. Add enough hot broth to cover the rice and continue to stir constantly over low to medium heat. Repeat this process two more times while continuing to stir. Season with salt and white pepper. While the risotto is cooking, lay 2 slices of prosciutto flat and wrap around each piece of salmon. In a hot skillet add a touch of olive oil and begin searing the prosciutto-wrapped fish on all sides. Transfer to a 400°F oven and continue to cook for about 5 minutes or until fish is cooked through. In a small hot skillet sauté mushrooms in a teaspoon of olive oil. Fold the mushrooms into the risotto and finish the risotto with 3–4 tablespoons cold butter.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Chardonnay Sur Lies.
If a wine is used in the preparation of a dish, it is favorable to serve the same wine. This smooth, buttery, un-oaked Chardonnay is a delightful addition to this rich dish.


Roasted Cod with Mango and Pineapple Chimichurri Sauce

serves 4

• 2 bunches Italian Parsley
• 4 each Whole Bay Leaves
• 10 cloves Peeled Garlic
• 1 teaspoon Black Pepper
• 1 tablespoon Smoked Paprika
• 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
• 2 tablespoons Oregano
• 1 cup Red Wine Vinegar
• 1 cup Diced Mango
• 1 cup Diced Pineapple
• 2 pounds Fresh Cod Fish

Combine all ingredients except pineapple, mango, and cod in a food processor, removing stems from parsley. Allow to run until all ingredients are combined and the sauce is smooth. Fold in the diced mango and pineapple. Chill and serve. Season cod with salt and pepper to taste and roast in 400 degree oven for seven minutes.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Reserve North Carolina Chardonnay


Scallops with “Melted” Leeks and Tarragon-Caper Butter

serves 4-6

• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 tablespoon drained capers, patted dry
• 2½ cups Biltmore® Chardonnay
• 7 whole peppercorns
• 3 shallots, thinly sliced
• 2 fresh thyme sprigs
• 1 bay leaf
• ¼ cup whipping cream
• 10 tablespoons (1¼ sticks) butter,cut into pieces
• 5 leeks, chopped (white and pale green parts only; about 4 cups)
• ¼ cup water
• 13 cup (packed) fresh chives, chopped
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 1 pound sea scallops
• 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon,chopped

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in heavy small skillet over medium heat. Add capers; sauté until crisp, about 1 minute. Using slotted spoon, transfer capers to paper towels to drain. Boil wine and next 4 ingredients in small saucepan over medium heat until liquid is reduced to 3 tablespoons, about 15 minutes. Add cream; boil until liquid is reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Set aside.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add leeks and water. Simmer until leeks are tender and almost all water evaporates, about 4 minutes. Mix in chives. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer leek mixture to platter. Tent with foil.

Sprinkle scallops with salt and pepper. Melt 2 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon oil in another heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add scallops; sauté until cooked, about 2 minutes per side. Arrange atop leeks. Tent with foil.

Reheat sauce over medium heat. Gradually add 6 tablespoons butter; whisk until smooth, about 1 minute (do not boil). Strain sauce into small bowl. Stir in capers and tarragon. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon over scallops.

Winemaster’s Suggestion:
Serve with Biltmore Reserve North Carolina Chardonnay

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