Family Meal

by Chef David Ferguson




Filtering by Tag: Seasonal Recipes

Striped Bass with Corn & White Bean Succotash

Prep Time:  20 min Cook Time:  15 min  Serves:  2

This is a perfect dinner for a warm summer night when you want something savory and fulfilling but not too heavy.  Prep in the kitchen is simple and quick, so you don't need to spend an hour over a hot stove.  Everything in this dish is fresh and seasonal, ensuring bright and vibrant flavors. Pair this with a light white wine, a wheat beer, or a brisk cocktail like a Moscow mule or mint julep.  

Light, fresh, and perfect for summer

Light, fresh, and perfect for summer


  • 2 half pound striped bass fillets (skin off)
  • 1/2 cup fresh yellow sweet corn 
  • 1/2 cup fresh English green peas
  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup great northern beans (rinsed and drained)
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp chives
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 1/4 cup thyme
  • 1/2 lemon (zested and juiced)
  • 1/2 tbs garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 tbs shallots (finely chopped)
  • 4 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 tbs butter
  • 1/4 vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Remove fish from the fridge and season both sides liberally with salt and pepper. Set aside on a small plate.  Seasoning and allowing the fish to come up to room temperature before you cook it will ensure a good sear and proper texture.  Add half the vegetable oil to a large saute pan over med-high heat.  When the oil shimmers, gently place the fish into the pan and immediately place in the oven for five minutes.  After the five minutes flip the fish and place back over medium heat, adding the butter to the pan and basting the fish until the top is crispy and brown.  Remove fish from the pan and let rest to the side tented in a piece of aluminum foil.  Pour off any used oil and return pan to medium heat adding the remaining reserved vegetable oil.  Add garlic and shallots to the pan, saute until fragrant  and then add the corn. Once the corn has started to cook add the peas and then the beans, tossing occasionally.  Finally add the spinach, tossing until it just starts to wilt.  Season with salt and pepper and lemon zest and plate the corn mixture, positioning your fish atop the succotash and reserving the pan for one final step.  Return the pan to medium heat, pour in vegetable stock and lemon juice and stir with a wooden spoon to lift the flavors off the pan.  Simmer lightly.  Toss in butter and herb mixture and lower heat, stirring sauce until thickened.  Spoon sauce lightly over fish and serve.  


Pan Roasted Arctic Char with Fettuccine, Summer Squash, & Romesco

Prep Time:  20 min  Cook Time:  10 min  Serves: 4

Summer brings many great things.  One of my favorites is cooking with the slew of fresh seasonal ingredients available and putting together a beautiful dinner to enjoy outside.  This recipe is perfect for the patio, and would pair very well with a medium bodied white wine.

 Being a close cousin to Salmon, Arctic Char has recently been offered as an alternative, with similar flesh and color and the mildly sweet freshwater taste of trout. The delicate texture and sweetness of the fish is an excellent compliment to the smokiness of the romesco sauce.  The pan must be very hot when you add the fish to ensure it doesn't stick and you get a proper sear.  If you prefer your fish more well done, make sure to allow for more time in the oven when cooking.  

If you have a julienne attachment on your mandolin now may be the time to break it out.  If the squash is not cut consistently and at the proper size, it won't cook evenly.  Sauteing the squash lightly and tossing with the fettuccine provides a refreshing crispness and balances out the velvety texture of the pasta.  



  • 4 6 oz Arctic Char fillets; skin on
  • 3 oz flat leaf parsley; chopped
  • 16 oz fettuccine
  • 4 oz grated Parmesan 
  • 1 tbl crushed red pepper
  • 1 clove garlic; finely chopped
  • 2 yellow summer squash; julienne
  • 1 zucchini;  julienne
  • 2 oz olive oil
  • 3 oz vegetable oil
  • 1 tbl butter
  • salt & pepper

Romesco Sauce

  • 3 large red bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup tomato puree
  • 2 tbl sherry vinnegar
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds; toasted
  • 1 clove garlic; crushed
  • 2 oz parsley; chopped
  • 2 oz basil; chopped
  • 2 oz oregano; chopped
  • 1 tsp paprika 
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a saute pan over medium heat, toast the slivered almonds until lightly browned.  Set Aside. Place the bell peppers on a grill over high heat, rotating every few minutes, until charred on all sides.  If you do not have a grill available, toss the peppers lightly in oil and roast in the oven for twenty mins. Once the peppers are done add them to a food processor along with the tomato puree, almonds, vinegar, herbs, spices, and garlic.  Process until finely chopped.  Slowly drizzle in the 1/2 cup olive oil with the processor running until smooth.  Set sauce aside.

Bring a pot of salted water up to boil and add the pasta.  Stir the pasta occasionally, checking after 3-4 minutes.  The pasta should be cooked al dente, tender but still firm when bitten.  Poor the pasta into a colander reserving a couple table spoons of the water.

Place a large pan over medium heat and add the  2  oz of olive oil, adding in the chopped garlic and red pepper flakes as well.  Saute until lightly brown and fragrant.  Add the squash and toss, cooking until tender.  Add the reserved pasta, water and butter.  Cook until the butter full melts and toss to coat.  Reserve to the side

Place a large saute pan over high heat and add the vegetable oil.  When you see light wisps of smoke rise from the pan, add the fish.  Carefully place the fish into the pan by holding it vertically and slowly lowering, allowing it to roll away from you.  This ensures no oil will splash back.  Cook the fish over high heat for one minute before placing in a preheated oven.  Cook for five minutes and remove from oven.  Gently turn fish over and lightly baste with the oil left in the pan. Remove fish from pan and allow to drain on paper towels or wire rack.  

Plate the pasta and sprinkle with the  grated Parmesan.  Place the fish on top of the pasta.  Serve with a dollop of romesco and garnish with chopped parsley.