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Petrale Sole with Cauliflower, Roasted grapes and Smoked Dried Plum Chipotle Mole

Pureed dried plums improve the texture of sauces and provide a natural sweetness which balances the spice of this mole sauce.

 Recipe courtesy of Chef Mark Liberman and the California Dried Plum Board.

Prep Time  30 min Cook Time  1 hour Serves  24


Smoked Dried Plum Chipotle Mole Puree:

1 1⁄2 cups diced Spanish onions

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

3 cups brandy

1 1⁄2 cups red wine vinegar

6 cups water

1 1⁄2 to 3 cups chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

6 cups California dried plums

1 tablespoon fennel seeds


3 cups browned butter

1 tablespoon ground nutmeg

Salt to taste

6 cups cauliflower florets

3/4 cup snipped fresh chives

3/4 cup chopped, toasted almonds


Roasted Grapes:

12 cups grapes

1/4 cup olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoons salt


Petrale sole:

24 (4 to 6-oz.) petrale sole filets

1 tbsp. salt

1 1⁄2 cups flour

1 1⁄2 cups unsalted butter

3/4 cup olive oil

6 cups arugula leaves


1.  To prepare sauce, gently cook onions in oil over medium heat until lightly caramelized. Deglaze with brandy and flambé to burn off alcohol. Add remaining sauce ingredients and cook gently for 25 minutes or until dried plums are soft. Place in a blender and puree until smooth, season with salt and keep warm.

2.  While sauce is cooking, preheat oven to 400F°F.  Combine brown butter, nutmeg and salt in a medium bowl. Add cauliflower and toss to coat. Spread in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and toss with almonds and chives; keep warm.

3.  To roast grapes, reduce oven temperature to 350°F, Toss grapes, olive oil and salt together in a small bowl. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven and keep warm.

4.  To prepare sole, heat butter and oil over medium heat in a very large skillet. Lightly season fish with salt and dredge in flour, shaking off excess. Add fish to skillet and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on one side or until golden brown. Flip gently and cook for 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove from pan with a slotted spatula.

5.  Spoon desired amount of Dried Plum Chipotle Puree onto 4 plates and place fish on top. Reheat the cauliflower mixture, if necessary, and top fish with arugula leaves, cauliflower and roasted grapes.