Nov. 29, 2012 Yummy Election Night Halibut

Written By: Paulette Kenyon, November 30, 2012

As duck season neared, it was obvious that Deke’s spine wasn’t getting better; so, Eric had to come to terms with the fact that he wouldn’t be duck hunting every weekend as usual this year. 

So, what’s open now? Crab season…. Yes! Crabs! But, one big problem stood in our way. Now that we had time to go for crabs, our 6 crab traps are gone. Eric loaned them to someone we thought was our friend, who now claims that he left Eric’s crab traps on “some guy’s” boat who he “lost touch with.”

He doesn’t seem to think it’s his problem anymore, even though it was always clear that we wanted them back. It’s funny how you think you know someone; but, then, something like this happens, and you realize you never did know them at all. 

So, here we are in crab season without any crab traps. Eric had some really nice ones too. I know that one of them will be nearly impossible to replace. So, Eric has asked me to look online to see what I can find.

It’s sad that Deke has so much heart that he would crawl out to the ducks if we let him; but, it looks like his duck hunting days are numbered. We knew these days would come; but, we had no idea they would be here so soon. We are going to try Adequan treatments for the pain in his neck which causes him to limp. It’s one of those medicines that either works great or not at all. 

So, we are crossing our fingers. So, it looks like this duck season will be spotted with fishing excursions in between the duck hunts. Maybe we’ll go for sturgeon too this year. Happily, Deke loves to fish also.

As I listened to the election results roll in the other night, I was working on this dish. I was sad to see that people actually believed Monsanto’s ads for Prop 37, the one that would require labeling of products that contain GMO’s. 

I know a lot of fishermen wanted 37 to pass because many of us are afraid of the threat and reality of GMO farmed salmon that are getting mixed in with wild salmon. Last month, I started calling food companies and reading labels and discovered that GMO’s are in most non-organic products in the Supermarkets. Ugh!

Anyway, on the bright side, my recipe on election night was spectacular! And, I think this would even be a good potluck meal. With the thinned fillets and the stratified vegetables and fish, this could be cut into smaller portions (like lasagna) for those who want to bring a tasty and different potluck item to your next event. I really recommend the big bags of baby kale that they sell at Costco. 

That’s what I used; however, I have seen other baby greens mixtures at Trader Joe’s, in markets, and even baby spinach could be substituted. But, my preference is the baby kale that I get at

Costco. It’s really yummy and tender. It says “Washed;” but, I always wash mine, break off some of the stocks, and pull out anything remotely yellow.


Halibut & Baby Kale Strata

4 slices bacon, cut in half, fried, drained, and crumbled

2 – 1 inch thick halibut fillets, cut in half lengthwise to create 4 thinner fillets

4-5 tightly packed cups of baby Kale leaves (or other baby greens of your choice)

4 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed or chopped finely

1-2 unpeeled red potatoes, cut in half and very thinly sliced

1-2 unpeeled, slender orange sweet potatoes (or garnet yams), very thinly sliced

Not quite 1/2 Cup chicken broth

Olive oil spray

1 red onion, peeled, cut in quarters, and very thinly sliced

Shredded Asiago cheese

Hot sauce

Smokehouse fish seasoning (or your favorite fish seasoning)


Lemon pepper

You will need a casserole dish that’s close to 9-1/2 inch x9-1/2 inch x2 inch – IE, a large, shallow casserole dish with a cover or use foil. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. To prepare the potatoes, put all the potato slices into a microwave safe cooker and add in about 1/4 Cup of the broth. Cook in the microwave for a couple of minutes or so, until a fork can almost easily push through a slice. You don’t want them mushy. You want them almost cooked.

Spray olive oil spray over the bottom of the casserole. Remove the potatoes from the broth and arrange the potato and sweet potato slices so that the different potatoes are evenly disbursed and hopefully each bite will be one or the other. (If you do not like one or the other, you can choose to just have one type – either the red or the sweet potatoes – although, I really encourage you to try this with at least some sweet potatoes). 

After you have fried the bacon, reserve one Tablespoon of the bacon fat in the pan and reheat the pan to high. Place the baby kale into the heated bacon fat and stir fry until the greens are just wilted. Stir in crushed garlic and remove from heat.

Sprinkle half of the red onions over the tops of the potatoes. Follow with about 1/4 Cup of the Asiago cheese. Then, spread the greens evenly over that. Sprinkle the bacon over the top of the greens and follow with about 4-5 splashes of hot sauce here and there over the greens.

Next, season the fillets with the fish seasoning and arrange them over the greens. Sprinkle with a little lemon pepper and a squirt or two of hot sauce on each fillet. The fillets should cover all the greens and fill up the casserole from end to end pretty well.

Follow with the remaining red onions and another 1/4 Cup or so of Asiago cheese. Dot each fillet with a little piece of butter (not more than 1/2 Tsp. per fillet). Pour a little bit of chicken broth around the edges of the casserole to add some moisture. Cover and cook in oven for about 25 minutes or until fish is cooked and everything is heated through. Serve with a large spatula removing each fillet with all that is beneath it - sort of like serving lasagna. 

If you want to use this at a potluck, I am pretty sure it would be fairly easy to cut this into smaller serving portions. Serves 2-4 persons. Everything you need is in this supper. Maybe some sliced tomatoes on the side would go nicely with this.

If you have any questions, comments, cooking tips or recipes to share, feel free to write me at Paulette or Cookin’ Yer Catch; c/o The Fish Sniffer; PO Box 776, Colfax, CA 95713-0776 or email me at Go for it!  

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