Skordalia is an incredibly tasty Greek dip/sauce made with almonds, lemon, garlic, olive oil, and day old bread or boiled potatoes. It can be served as a dip for pita chips or crudité or as a sauce for chicken, shrimp, or numerous vegetables or proteins. My Greek sister-in-law, Despina makes the ultimate and best skordalia. When she makes it, I put it on everything- vegetables, bread, meat, in fact I’ll skip dessert just to eat more baquette with skordalia. It’s surprising that not as well known as other Mediterranean spreads such as hummus or babagnoush, because I think its more tasty than them. Obviously I love skordalia! Recently we enjoyed a meal together of lamb and roasted potatoes all slathered with skordalia and savored with a few bottles of surprisingly good Greek white wine. Over dessert, we brainstormed about using skordalia in my halibut project and came up with a skordalia crusted halibut.
I couldn’t replicate the exact taste of her skordalia (she doesn’t use a recipe), but I found one that is pretty close and I adjusted the amount of liquid to make more of a paste consistency so as to adhere to the fish better. I don’t like covering a crusted fish with a sauce as it makes the crust soggy, so instead I choose a carrot fettuccine with a lemon cream sauce for a side dish. The sauce is napped on the bottom of the plate and can flavor each bite while maintaining the crispy crust on top. Steamed artichokes dipped in skordalia (of course) completed the meal.
This was a restaurant quality crusted fish- the bread, lemon, garlic, and almond flavor all came through in the crust. I set the timer to prevent overcooking the fish- 3 minutes on first side and then 2 minutes on other side and a 5 minute rest period (remember its 5 minutes per inch for frozen fish as compared to 7 minutes per inch for fresh). It was cooked perfectly- moist and flavorful throughout and each crispy bite was enhanced by the light lemon cream sauce. I made the skordalia and cooked the artichokes in the morning, and only had to cook the fish and carrot fettuccine 15 minutes before we ate. A healthy tasty quick and easy to prepare meal perfect for during the week. My husband rated it in his top 5 halibut recipes. And I have leftover skordalia to last a few more days…..maybe grilled skordalia shrimp?