Cod in Crazy Water over Smashed Dijon Potatoes


I came across these recipes from Cuisine at Home Magazine while I was looking for new fish dishes.  I had read about poaching fish and had enjoyed it when others have made it  but I had never attempted it myself.  Somehow I just feared either under cooking the fish or even worse, overcooking it and ending up with it being too dry and tough.  Besides, it is only recently that I even have a receptive fish eating audience at home to test these dishes on.  Bu these times they are a changing………..

With tomatoes, olives, capers, and fennel, I was intrigued by the flavor profile of this dish but given Glenn’s dislike of these briny Mediterranean flavors, combined with his recently acquired desire to even try fish, I was hesitant to try it.  However, fortified with the urge to try something new I decided to give it a go.  And I’m so glad I did.  Not only was the fish fork tender but the Dijon infused potatoes provided the perfect bed for absorbing the flavorful juice or “crazy water”.  And the entire meal came together in less than 40 minutes making it a perfect weeknight dinner.

Oh, and Glenn like it too, declaring it a keeper.


For the fish:

1/2 cup diced carrot

1/2 cup diced fennel bulb

1 Tablespoon minced garlic

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1- 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes in juice

1 cup water

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/4 cup whole black olives

2 Tablespoons capers, rinsed

1 Tablespoon minced lemon zest

1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 Teaspoon red pepper flakes

4- 6 ounce cod fillets (or one per person)

Chopped fennel fronds

  • Cook the carrot, fennel, and garlic in the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat until browned, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes, water, wine, olives, capers, zest, lemon juice, salt, and pepper flakes; simmer until reduced by half, about 10 minutes.
  • Add the cod to the pan, and poach over low heat until firm, 8-10 minutes.  
  • Transfer the cod to shallow serving bowls filled with a bed of potatoes.
  • Pour crazy water over each serving and garnish with fennel fronds.


For the Potatoes:

1 pound red-skinned potatoes, cubed

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Tablespoon grated Parmesan

1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt

  • Cook potatoes in a pot of boiling water until fork tender, 12 minutes.
  • Drain the potatoes and return to the pot.  Cook potatoes over medium heat, stirring, to remove the excess moisture, 1 minute.
  • Crush the potatoes with a potato mashers.
  • Stir in oil, Dijon, Parmesan, and salt until combined.

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