When we announced crackers as the essential ingredient for week 2 of the Cabin Fever Cook-Off, our expectations were admittedly low. It’s hard to make crackers interesting. It shouldn’t have been a surprise when the amazing professional chefs, home chefs and hobby cooks that are a part of our Stargazer community rose to the occasion with dozens of amazing original dishes that made boring crackers shine. Of all of the submissions for the week, the one we felt we absolutely had to try was from our friend Ezra at @darth_traeger.
Ezra made an incredible dish using halibut, the king of white fish, and coating it with a crispy buttery cracker crust, which he fittingly paired with the king of sauces, hollandaise sauce. When I first bit into this fresh but filling combo, I noticed the buttery richness of the cracker crust and hollandaise sauce. The decadence of the of crust and sauce are brought to balance by the fresh flavor of the flaky halibut fillets, making this dish perfect for hot or cold days.
This dish was also incredibly easy to cook and I hope you all enjoy this as much as my family and I did.
1 sleeve of your favorite crackers (we used Ritz crackers)
1 stick (8 tbsp) salted butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp dried minced onion
2 cups of hollandaise sauce (from scratch, a jar or a mix packet)
¼ cup cilantro or Italian parsley, diced (optional)
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Empty the sleeve of crackers into a freezer bag and crush the crackers into small crumbs with your palm or a meat tenderizing mallet. Add the entire stick of butter to a microwave safe bowl and microwave until completely melted. Add the olive oil to your skillet, spread evenly over the entire cooking surface.
Mix the salt, black pepper, paprika, garlic powder and dried minced onion in a small bowl, then sprinkle and rub the halibut fillets with the spice mixture. Add fillets to your well oiled skillet, skin side down if necessary. Add your crushed crackers to the bowl with the melted butter and mix well.
Generously cake the cracker and butter mixture on top of each halibut fillet creating an even crust that is approximately ¼-½” thick across the top of each fillet. Move the skillet to the preheated oven and bake for 20 minutes.
While your fish is baking, prepare your hollandaise sauce according to the instructions on the jar, packet or your favorite recipe.
Remove the skillet from the oven and serve immediately with a generous drizzle of hollandaise sauce and a light sprinkle of diced cilantro or Italian parsley to finish.