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Brown Butter Halibut Orzo and Mushroom Broth

Brown Butter Seared Halibut with Orzo and Mushroom Broth | ASpicyPerspective.com #pasta #dinnerparty #delalloSimple Elegant Brown Butter Seared Halibut with Orzo and Earthy Mushroom Broth.

Brown Butter Halibut with Orzo and Mushroom Broth | ASpicyPerspective.com #pasta #dinnerparty #delallo

When the kids were toddlers, I had to get out of the house.

As a stay-at-home mom, I was doing exactly what I wanted to do, yet it was making me a little delirious.

DeLallo Pasta with Mushrooms #delallo

I loved raising my babies and experiencing all their momentous occasions first-hand, but I desperately needed adult interaction.

Sweet Lt. Dan would plan a date night each week, so I would have a reason to get out of my spit-crusted yoga pants and make conversation that required full sentences.

He’s good like that.

Rustic Brown Butter Halibut with Orzo and Mushroom Broth | ASpicyPerspective.com #pasta #dinnerparty #delallo

Now that the kids are a little older, date night is no longer a necessity. Instead, we have dates for the sheer enjoyment of spending time together.

Honestly, sometimes I’d rather have a date-night in!

We recently went out to dinner, and I ordered a dish with a rich mushroom broth poured over the top. I was struck by the simplicity of the dish, yet with dark complex flavors.

Mushroom Broth

Days after our grownup night out, I couldn’t stop thinking about that earthy mushroom broth poured over simple clean ingredients.

I had to try this concept at home.

I made my own mushroom broth, using fresh button mushrooms, dried woodear mushrooms, and dried shiitake mushrooms. (Note: Dried woodear mushrooms often smell like feet, but provide a robust mushroom flavor. You won’t notice the aroma once the mushroom broth is strained.)

Brown Butter Seared Halibut

Then I decided to make a classic seared halibut. Pan-frying halibut in brown butter creates a rich golden-brown crust on this light flaky fish.

Sherry Sauted Mushrooms

I served the seared halibut and sherry sauteed criminis on a bed of DeLallo Organic Orzo, to provide texture and soak up the mushroom broth.

Then I gingerly poured the steaming-hot mushroom broth over the brown butter halibut and orzo.

Brown Butter Seared Halibut with Orzo and Mushroom Broth | ASpicyPerspective.com #pasta #dinnerparty #delallo

This dish is somewhere between a pasta dish and a soup.

No matter how you categorize it, it’s sheer rustic elegance.

Perfect for a Date-Night IN.

Mushroom Broth over Brown Butter Seared Halibut

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes


For the Mushroom Broth:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 14 cups water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 pound fresh button mushrooms
  • 1 cup dried woodear mushrooms
  • 1 cup dried shiitake mushrooms

For the Brown Butter Seared Halibut with Orzo and Mushrooms:



  1. For the Mushroom Broth: Place a large pot over medium-high heat. Saute the onions to soften, 3-5 minutes, then add the garlic. Saute another minute, then the water, salt, and all mushrooms. (If all the water won't fit in you pot, add as much as possible, and add the remaining water after the broth has simmered down a bit.) Cover, turn the heat down a little, and simmer for 1 hour.
  2. Once the mushroom broth has simmered for an hour, strain out all the veggies and keep warm until time to serve.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet of medium-high, and bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Thoroughly dry the halibut fillets with paper towels, then salt and pepper both sides.
  4. Cook the DeLallo Organic Orzo according to package instructions. Strain and set aside.
  5. Place the butter in the skillet. Allow it to melt and brown for 2-3 minutes, then place the halibut fillets in the skillet. Sear for 1-3 minutes per side, depending on thickness. DO NOT overcook the halibut. It should be just barely cooked through, to keep its moist flaky texture. Once the halibut it perfectly seared, Place it on a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
  6. Then add the mushrooms and garlic to the skillet. Saute for 5-10 minutes to soften and brown. Salt and Pepper to taste, then add the sherry. Continue to cook the mushrooms, until the sherry has absorbed.
  7. To plate: Place a mound of orzo in 4 shallow bowls. Top the orzo with mushrooms and seared halibut fillets. Pour the mushroom broth in a serving bowl. At the table, allow each guest to pour mushroom broth over their bowl and serve immediately.


Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!

More Date Night In Ideas:

Crab and Gnocchi Gratin

Moroccan Grilled Lamb Chops

Stuffed Flank Steak with Prosciutto and Mushrooms

Portobello Mushrooms with Kale Pesto ~Bev Cooks

Seared Scallops Fettuccine ~ A Thought For Food

Chicken Cacciatore with Tomato Basil Sauce ~ DeLallo

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68 Responses to “Brown Butter Halibut Orzo and Mushroom Broth”

  1. Julie Wunder @ runninginaskirtposted February 8, 2013 at 5:06 am

    This looks fantastic Sommer! YUM!


  2. Robyn Stone | Add a Pinchposted February 8, 2013 at 7:41 am

    We love halibut! So delicious cooked in so many ways. This looks fabulous.


  3. Heather @ Heather's Dishposted February 8, 2013 at 7:42 am

    I think my eyes just rolled back in my head – this sounds SO decadent and yummy!


  4. Julie Henslerposted February 8, 2013 at 7:59 am

    This looks fantastic! Can’t wait to try it!


  5. Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabblesposted February 8, 2013 at 8:04 am

    I’d take this date-night-in ANY night. It looks so comforting and delicious.


  6. Cassieposted February 8, 2013 at 8:12 am

    This is stunning, Sommer! What a great date-night meal. I love the mushroom broth!


  7. shelly (cookies and cups)posted February 8, 2013 at 8:32 am

    Totally love mushrooms with orzo. Great meal!


  8. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggiesposted February 8, 2013 at 8:34 am

    I think mushrooms are my favorite thing to cook with. Especially the fancy ones! This looks beautiful. :)


  9. Jenny Flakeposted February 8, 2013 at 9:00 am

    What an absolutely perfect looking dinner! Love everything about it!!


  10. marlaposted February 8, 2013 at 9:10 am

    I’m thinkin’ this needs 2 be dinner tonight!!


  11. bridget {bake at 350}posted February 8, 2013 at 9:21 am

    Oh my word…that looks fabulous!


  12. Bev @ Bev Cooksposted February 8, 2013 at 9:30 am

    I’m like, on the floor right now.


  13. Belinda @zomppaposted February 8, 2013 at 9:39 am

    This is definitely a comfort dish!


  14. Kevin @ Closet Cookingposted February 8, 2013 at 9:39 am

    You can’t go wrong with a tasty mushroom broth and this meal is so nice and simple and tasty along with healthy!


  15. Stacy | Wicked Good Kitchenposted February 8, 2013 at 9:55 am

    My skirt just flew up! Sommer, you have created a simple yet complex-flavored masterpiece—a real rustic beauty. “Date-Night In” may no longer be so intimidating for new cooks—especially when preparing fish—with your guidance and how-to link within this recipe post. Pan-seared light and flaky halibut? In brown butter? Homemade mushroom broth? Quality organic orzo by DeLallo cooked al dente? Soup or pasta dish, I’m there!


  16. Carrie @ Kiss My Whiskposted February 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Simple, delicious & elegant…love ‘date night in’ dinners!


  17. Jennifer @ Mother Thymeposted February 8, 2013 at 10:19 am

    I can relate about being a stay at home mom. As much as I love it and am fortunate to be home, I need adult interaction. Thanks for sharing this delicious recipe. I just may need to make this for our Valentine’s Day dinner in. :)


  18. Angieposted February 8, 2013 at 10:19 am

    I love these, and I totally get the need to go out. Now I want to stay in more since my son is older, like you too, but date nights sure are nice!


  19. Kristenposted February 8, 2013 at 10:38 am

    I need to get out all the time, but also love being home. Date night, on the other hand, needs to happen soon around here. I miss regular date nights!


  20. Julie @ Table for Twoposted February 8, 2013 at 11:02 am

    oh my gosh – sommer! this looks so elegant and flavorful. it would be a dream to have this as a valentine’s day dish or just a romantic night in. i love mushrooms so much! this is seriously perfection!


  21. Morganposted February 8, 2013 at 11:30 am

    What an elegant yet approachable dish. This would be perfect for a Valentine’s dinner at home. Thanks for sharing :)


  22. Laura (Tutti Dolci)posted February 8, 2013 at 11:30 am

    This looks incredible, Sommer! Can I come for dinner? ;) Love the brown butter and the mushroom broth!


  23. Deb Clem-Buckertposted February 8, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    Sounds so yummy I had to pin it!!


  24. Marian (Sweetopia)posted February 8, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    Sommer, this sounds so perfect, especially for this winter storm weather we’re experiencing up here!


  25. Angie @ Big Bear's Wifeposted February 8, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    I love it when a simple dish packs such a flavor punch that you think about it for days! It always makes it a “keeper”


  26. Barbara | Creative Culinaryposted February 8, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    I love everything in this dish separately; together I can just imagine how divine it is.


  27. a farmer in the dellposted February 8, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    what a beautiful, elegant, yet easy meal! yum!


  28. Paula - bell'alimentoposted February 8, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    I love everything about this. I think I’m going to need a bigger bowl : )


  29. Mariaposted February 8, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Brown butter always lures me in:)


  30. Kate@Diethoodposted February 8, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    Oh, man, that looks SO freakin’ good!!

    I’m one of those SAHM with a 3-year old and an 8-month old… I’m sorta kinda going crazy… :-D I need a date night asap!


  31. jennifurlaposted February 8, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    spit encrusted yogo pants! I have ten pairs of those, along with matching jackets. This looks divine!


  32. Val @ Bonbon Breakposted February 8, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    This sounds and looks delicious. When I saw the title I though “perfect for a date night”! Thank you Sommer for another beautiful and savory recipe.


  33. Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidenceposted February 8, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    YUM!! I love the smell of mushrooms caramelizing in butter. That’s what I imagine this tastes like. With fish.


  34. Gabyposted February 8, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    obsessing over this!


  35. Amy Tongposted February 8, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    What a beautiful dish. I would totally enjoy a date night in with this rustic elegant dish. I love the woodear fungus. I didn’t notice it smells like foot. hahaha….guess I didn’t really take a close up sniff! :P I love this pasta/soup dish. It sounds comforting and I’ll be a super happy girl to have this on my dinner table!


  36. Ali | Gimme Some Ovenposted February 8, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    This looks heavenly!! Love that mushroom broth.

    And your photos are outstanding, Sommer! :)


  37. Miss @ Miss in the Kitchenposted February 8, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Such a gorgeous dish! I have some woodear mushrooms and I hadn’t figured out what to do with them yet. Looks like I found it!


  38. JanetFCTCposted February 8, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    Now that would be my idea of a perfect dinner. I will have to cut that down and make that for just myself one of these nights when my husband is working and the kids aren’t home.


    • Sommer — February 9th, 2013 @ 9:24 am

      Good plan! :)


  39. DessertForTwoposted February 8, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    Ahhhh brothy foods are so me! Love this dish!


  40. Erika @ The Hopeless Housewifeposted February 8, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    I just love everything about this dish.


  41. Nicole @ youngbrokeandhungryposted February 9, 2013 at 1:42 am

    I would gladly take this dish over going out! It looks amazing.


  42. Carolynposted February 9, 2013 at 7:06 am

    Adult interaction? What’s that??? :)
    Love this meal. Skip the orzo for me but the rest is right up my alley.


    • Sommer — February 9th, 2013 @ 9:23 am

      Hey Carolyn, DeLallo makes GF pasta as well!


  43. Kathleenposted February 9, 2013 at 8:57 am

    This looks wonderful!

    **And I love your white bowls– perfectly sized, and so elegant– would you recall what brand they are, or where you purchased them?

    Thanks so much. I love your blog, all you recipes always work perfectly! Kathleen


    • Sommer — February 9th, 2013 @ 9:22 am

      Hey Kathleen! All my favorite bowls come from Villeroy & Boch. Check out their Flow and Modern Grace lines. :)


  44. Brian @ A Thought For Foodposted February 9, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Fish and mushrooms with brown butter? I’m sold!


  45. ashley - baker by natureposted February 9, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    I LOVE date nights in! They can be much more intimate and relaxing. This meal would be perfect for special night at home!


  46. Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamilyposted February 9, 2013 at 7:59 pm

    Oh my gosh sommer! I took a deep breath which sounded a bit like a Mmmmmm when I came here and saw this. Exactly what I need on my menu next week!

    I can totally relate to your story! We have 4 children, the youngest is 3 so it is a bittersweet moment in our lives indeed.


  47. katieposted February 9, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    This is a perfect date night-in recipe! Looks tasty.


  48. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.posted February 10, 2013 at 12:11 am

    This looks so flavorful! I love halibut, but I have never made it at home!


  49. Chung-Ah | Damn Deliciousposted February 10, 2013 at 12:16 am

    Amazing! I could sure use a bowl of this right now!

    I’ll have to make this for Jason – he’ll be thrilled!


  50. Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.posted February 10, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    looks great girl!


  51. JulieDposted February 11, 2013 at 7:19 am

    I love the mushroom broth and everything about this dish!!


  52. Mushrooms Canadaposted February 11, 2013 at 8:58 am

    This recipe gives me reason to never go out for a date night again! How amazing does that look?! I will definitely be trying it out, maybe for Valentines Day! Thanks for sharing…



  53. Christine (Cook the Story)posted February 13, 2013 at 11:02 am

    What a beautiful dish. I love mushrooms. And I love broth with mushrooms in it. Always adds so much umami. I also love reading that I am not alone in my need to get out of my encrusted yoga pants and find some adult company. Thanks for the hope that this craziness (as much as I love it! Ummm…usually!) will end soon.


  54. Missyposted February 22, 2013 at 6:12 am

    Looks so delicious!!! Do you use any of the strained “vegetables” from the broth? Or discard them. Are the mushrooms that are used later in the recipe fresh or the ones from the broth?


    • Sommer — February 22nd, 2013 @ 5:38 pm

      Hi Missy, Yes the mushrooms in the after-shots are sauteed. Those that are removed for the broth don’t have a lots of texture and most of their flavor has been transferred to the broth, so I always put them in the compost or dog bowl. :)


  55. marlaposted March 11, 2013 at 5:48 am

    linking back to this beauty today :)


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  57. Cythia Sappposted April 22, 2013 at 10:53 am

    Butter is a dairy product made by churning fresh or fermented cream or milk. It is generally used as a spread and a condiment, as well as in cooking, such as baking, sauce making, and pan frying. Butter consists of butterfat, milk proteins and water…

    Enjoy your day


  58. rlk @ FirstTimeFoodsposted November 17, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    This looks and sounds so gourmet! I am definitely going to try it out soon. Thanks for sharing!


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  62. Good Food Lancashireposted December 10, 2014 at 6:22 am

    Ohh so much Amazing and beautiful dish of mushroom.I definitely try it.Thanks for sharing..


  63. Karl Hansenposted December 16, 2014 at 10:14 pm

    Thanks so much! The flavor from the broth was excellent and I will be trying something similar with lamb chops. I was directed here searching for a lamb chop recipe but made the halibut instead and need to make the chops too. Great flavor.


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