“Basil and white wine in the sauce elevates the recipe from good to gourmet quality.”
Some people love to criticize New Jersey; but there two Garden State products that are nearly impossible to find fault with, fresh caught summer flounder (fluke) and vine-ripened, sweet tomatoes.
Flounder to some in South Jersey down the DELMARVA coast, fluke from North Jersey up through New York and into New England, may be the perfect fish to target. They are readily available in inshore waters, although finding keeper-class can be challenging depending on where you’re fishing and when. It’s a fun species to catch, and their white fillets are absolutely delicious.
Most summer flounder lovers bread and fry these mild flavored fish fillets. I too love fresh fried fluke, but when I came upon a recipe incorporating both ruby red tomatoes plucked from my garden with flounder fillets boated on my morning trip, I could not resist it.
The dish is simple to make with the only involved part throwing together some white sauce. The basil and white wine in the sauce elevates the recipe from good to gourmet quality. The quantities below produce four ample servings.
2 pounds flounder fillets 2 tablespoons butter
1-1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons flour
3 medium tomatoes sliced 1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon crushed dry basil 1/3 cup white wine
salt & pepper to taste
Sprinkle fish on both sides with salt and pepper to taste. Place in a single layer in a greased baking dish. Arrange tomatoes on top and add a little more salt and pepper. Make a white sauce of the butter, flour, and milk and stir until it thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the wine and basil. Pour the white sauce over the tomatoes and fish, and bake in an oven pre-heated to 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. The fish should flake easily when done.