Local cod from Shore Catch via the Rittenhouse Farmers’ Market is one of our year-round staples. Although we often just prepare the cod simply, we’re always on the lookout for new and different cod recipes. This recipe for stir-fried cod with yellow squash and asparagus from Serious Eats caught my eye since, while I often use the velveting technique when stir-frying chicken, it had never occurred to me to use the same technique with fish. This recipe also employs water velveting, which I had never done before. The major change I made was to use green beans instead of asparagus, because asparagus is long out of season by the time yellow squash becomes available where I live.
We usually buy one 3/4 lb. filet of cod. First, I sliced the cod about 1/4″ thick, then put the pieces in a medium-sized bowl.
In a small bowl, I prepared the marinade:
1 egg white
2 tsp corn starch
2 tsp Shaoxing rice wine
and poured the mixture on top of the fish, mixing lightly, making sure not to break up the fish. Once the fish was coated with the marinade, I covered the bowl and put it back in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
In the meantime I prepped the vegetables:
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 lb yellow squash, sliced about 1/8″ thick
1/4 lb green beans, ends trimmed, cut into about 1″ pieces
[optional: chopped red and orange bell peppers or other colorful summer vegetables]
and I prepped the sauce:
3 tbsp chicken stock
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp corn starch
I filled my pan about half way (about 2 inches deep) with water and brought it to a boil. I added the fish and cooked for about 1 minute, at which point the fish was mostly cooked through. I gently drained the fish in a colander and set it aside. Luckily the water velveting method means the pan was easy to clean!
After cleaning the pan, I returned it to the stove, added about 2 tbsp oil, and stir-fried the garlic, squash, and green beans, for about a minute. Then I added the sauce, a pinch of salt, and finally, the fish, and stirred carefully so that the sauce was thickened and the fish was fully cooked.
Overall I find it to be a refreshing summer dish; the sauce livens it up just enough to keep it from being bland, but it’s also very light and doesn’t overpower the vegetables. It can be served over rice or noodles, accompanied by a chilled bottle of rosé.