Sear-Roasted Striper Filets

This technique for cooking firm, white fish is a popular chef’s trick often used in restaurants, but it’s great for home cooks, too. By searing the fish filets (skin side up) on the stovetop first, the filet takes on a beautiful golden color, which also seals in moisture. Then, after flipping the filets, you put the whole pan in the oven where the indirect heat finishes baking the fish through. The whole process is quick — about five minutes on the stovetop and five to seven minutes in the oven, depending on the thickness of the filets. Make the dressing ahead and just spoon it on the fish before serving.

A note on the size of filets: If you ask for 1 1/2 pounds of striper at the fish market, you’ll probably get one long filet. If possible, choose a piece that is on the thicker side — about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches — and evenly thick at both ends (or close). When you get the piece home, cut it in half crosswise first and then cut each of those two pieces in half again (lengthwise) so that what you end up with is pieces that are closer to squares or squat rectangles rather than long thin strips. These are easier to handle in the pan and make for a nice presentation.

Serves 4

1/4 to 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

Kosher salt

4 6-ounce (skin-on) striper filets (about 1 1/2 pounds)

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 recipe Summer Tomato — Fresh Corn Dressing

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Put the flour on a plate. Season the fish filets with salt and dredge the filets in the flour, lightly coating them on all sides.

In a large nonstick ovenproof sauté pan (or a cast iron pan), heat the butter and oil over medium heat. When the butter has melted and the pan is hot, add the fish filets, flesh-side down. Cook without disturbing until the bottoms are a nice golden brown, about five minutes. (Depending on your stove, you may need to adjust the heat up a bit.)

Gently turn the filets over (I use tongs) and put the pan into the oven. Cook until the filets are firm to the touch, between 5 and 7 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let rest for a few minutes. Serve each filet with a generous portion of the tomato corn dressing spooned over it.

Summer tomato and fresh corn dressing. — Jeanna Shepard

Summer Tomato — Fresh Corn Dressing

Here’s the essence of summer: Call it a salsa, a fresh sauce, a chunky vinaigrette, whatever you like, but it’s a perfect accompaniment to fish, steak, or grilled vegetables. It also makes a great topping for grilled bread. For the brightest flavor, be generous with the fresh herbs and the acidic ingredients (vinegar, citrus juice).

Makes 4 to 5 cups

2 cups halved or quartered colorful small cherry tomatoes (about 12 ounces)

1 1/2 to 2 cups fresh corn kernels (cut from 3 to 4 cobs)

1/4 cup thinly sliced drained oil-packed sundried tomatoes

5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 to 3 tablespoons very thinly sliced fresh basil (or a combination of basil, mint, cilantro and/or Thai basil), plus herb sprigs or flowers for garnish

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lime or lemon juice

2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

In a mixing bowl, combine the tomatoes, corn, sundried tomatoes, olive oil, herbs, the vinegar, the lime or lemon juice, the garlic and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir gently and let sit for a minute. Stir again, taste, and season with more salt if needed.

These recipes originally appeared with this story.