Mahi Mahi Veronique with Champagne Grapes


One of the most famous dishes in the tradition of la grande cuisine Française is Sole Veronique, a fillet of sole poached in white wine, covered in white sauce, and garnished with grapes. The dish has fallen out of fashion, but the term Veronique is still in use, descriptive of recipes that feature seedless white (green) grapes.Here we've paired a mild, fine-textured fish with a sauce that incorporates diminuitive champagne grapes. It's simple to prepare, light, and quite pretty.Champagne grapes are actually the black Corinth variety, measuring about 1/4 inch in diameter. Look for them in specialty markets or many Whole Foods stores in August and September. If they're not available in your area, substitute any small seedless grape, or cut larger grapes in halves or quarters.


2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 fillets fresh mahi-mahi (skinless (1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pounds total))
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons finely minced shallots
1/2 cup champagne, sparkling wine, or fruity white wine (such as muscadet or gewürtztraminer)
2 tablespoons heavy (whipping) cream
1 1/2 cups champagne grapes or other small grapes (stems removed)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter (cut into 4 pieces, at room temperature)
  Salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)


Position a rack in the center of the oven, and preheat to 250 degrees F.

Combine the flour with salt and pepper to taste, and spread on a shallow plate. Lightly dip the fish into the flour mixture and shake off any excess.

Place a large, heavy-bottom skillet over medium-high heat; when hot, add the oil. Sauté the fillets, turning once, until they're golden and just cooked through in the center, 6 to 12 minutes total (depending on the thickness of the fish). Transfer the fillets to an oven-proof platter and place in the warm oven, uncovered.

Add the shallots to the skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the shallots soften, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the wine and cream, and cook, stirring often, until the liquid reduces and thickens slightly, about 3 minutes.

Add the grapes and reduce the heat to low. Cook until the grapes are just heated through, 1 to 2 minutes, shaking the pan rather than stirring, to avoid damaging the grapes.

Remove the pan from the heat. Add the butter and season generously with salt and pepper to taste, swirling the pan, rather than stirring, to blend the ingredients. Spoon the sauce and grapes over the fish fillets and serve immediately.


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