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This compound butter is a quick “sauce” for steak, chicken, fish, or anything else that might come from around the Mediterranean basin. Store in the freezer for nights when you are tired and inspiration is lacking. The flavors are earthy and bold.
¼ pound (1 stick) good quality unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves, chopped or finely sliced
½ cup heaping finely sliced scallions, 2:1 green/white
Salt and pepper, large flake and fresh ground, about 1/8th teaspoon
½ tablespoon high-quality red wine vinegar, or white wine vinegar
When the butter has softened, spread it onto a sheet of foil into a square or rectangle around ¼ inch thick. Season with the salt and pepper, scattering it evenly over the surface of the butter.
Evenly scatter the scallions over the surface of the butter, and then do the same with the oregano. Use a fork to work the toppings into the butter while trying not to pulverize the scallion bits.
Drizzle the vinegar over the butter, trying to keep it from running off the butter. Gently work into the butter.
Scrape the butter together and roughly form a 4-inch log. Transfer this onto a fresh square of parchment or plastic wrap, and place near the bottom of the sheet. Roll up from the bottom, keeping the cylinder tight. Twist ends in opposite directions to compact the butter roll.
Place in the refrigerator to firm up, then unroll and neaten up the ends. Wrap up and store in the refrigerator for short term storage, or freeze for long term. Butter will keep its flavor for 1-2 months.
To use, allow the butter to come to the same temperature as the butter in the ‘frig used for toast. Slice what you need off and keep in the refrigerator until needed. Return the rest to the freezer.
Chef’s Notes: For more complexity of flavor- sweetness, funk, char/smoke-grill the scallions first. Start with 8-10 scallions and grill over a ripping hot fire just until charred and softened a little. Trim away burnt bits and any slippery skin. Then proceed as above. Use this on pretty much anything. Meats, fish, grilled or roasted asparagus, roasted Portobellos marinated in wine. It would even be great on halved and grilled romaine lettuces or roasted baby carrots.
Yield: Around ¼ pound/1 stick
Source: Chef Andrew E Cohen
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