Brown Butter Duet: Panko-Crusted Halibut Over Gnocchi and Banana Blondies


One of our go-to dishes when we’re feeling decadent is Panko-Crusted Halibut over Gnocchi in a Brown Butter Sage Sauce. It was originally inspired by a gnocchi-making class we took at PCC. Our teacher was a flamboyant Italian woman named Iole and after tasting her homemade gnocchi with the brown butter sage sauce, we knew we’d found a keeper.  Although this night we opted for the store-bought version, it’s surprisingly easy and fun to make the gnocchi from scratch.

1 lb fresh halibut (or other firm, white fish)
1/2 cup Panko
Birds eye chile peppers (optional)
1/4 cup parmesan
1 Egg
1 package gnocchi
1 stick butter


Pat dry the individual sage leaves and air dry on a paper towel for a couple hours. For the bread crumb crust, mix together the panko with the parmesan, a few birds eye chiles, and seasonings. Set aside. Cut up the butter into small squares and put in the freezer for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, get a stainless steel bottomed pan, turn on the heat to medium-high, and get really hot. Add the butter and with a silicon spatula, mix continually until the butter has melted completely. Add the sage leaves and watch until crispy. Pull out and set aside. At this point the milk solids should begin to separate from the fat and it’s imperative to watch the sauce closely. When the milk solids begin to smell sweet and turn that nutty brown color, pull the pan from the heat immediately. They will continue to cook but if it looks like the color is a dark brown, transfer the sauce to a heat proof dish.

Coat the fish in the egg and the panko crumb mixture. Grill on each side until golden, and if necessary, finish in a 400º oven.


We recently caught a video on the New York Times website that detailed the recipe for Brown Butter Banana Blondies with a Chocolate Cookie Crust. Seeing as we were already making the sauce for the gnocchi, we decided to double up and add these to the menu. Two sticks of butter can’t be that bad if you give them all away, right? Here’s the recipe from their website:

We are currently addicted to Dang coconut chips so we added some of those to the top. These blondies will blow your socks off!


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