Sole fillets are a delicate fish and here they are cooked with a cream cheese, parsley and lemon stuffing, which adds to the flavour of the fish without overpowering it. Cooks in just 20 minutes for a delicious meal.
Put the potatoes in a large pan of cold salted water, bring to the boil, and cook for 20 minutes, until tender.
Add the eggs during the last 10 minutes (saves on another pan!). Once the eggs are ready, remove from the pan and run them under cold water. (This will prevent a dark rim forming round the yolk while they are cooling.)
Drain and mash the potatoes with 28g (1 oz) (⅛ cup, or ¼ stick) of the butter and a little milk, until creamy. Set aside.
Next, melt the rest of the butter in a pan and, once foaming, tip the pan and quickly add the flour. Stir to form a smooth paste and cook over a low heat for 2 minutes. Warm the milk (a microwave makes this quick) and gradually stir into the roux until smooth. Stir in the wine. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and gently cook for 5–10 minutes until the sauce is very thick, stirring constantly. (The sauce needs to be very thick because once the fish is added and cooks in the sauce, its juices will thin it.) Add the lemon juice, salt and pepper and a good grating of nutmeg.
Now cut the fish into bite-sized chunks and mix into the sauce with the spinach. Spoon into the ovenproof dish.
Peel the eggs, carefully cut into quarters and scatter them evenly over the top of the fish.
Cover with the mashed potato and sprinkle with the cheese.
Cover the dish with foil and cook in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the foil then cook for a further 10–15 minutes until the top is golden and the sauce is bubbling around the edges.
Pour the milk into a large pan. Cut the salmon into cubes and add with the prawns/shrimp to the pan. Bring to the boil. Then remove from the heat, cover, and leave for 5 minutes to cook the fish.
Now drain the fish, reserving the liquor, and place in the base of the pie dish with the sweetcorn.
Next, melt the butter in a clean pan. Add the flour and mix to form a paste. Cook over a low heat for 1 minute. Then gradually stir in the reserved liquor until smooth. Increase the heat, and stir the sauce until it is really thick, about 2 minutes. Now stir in the wine and add the mushrooms. Simmer for 3 minutes. Season to taste and add the dill.
Pour sauce over the fish and mix in. Leave to cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
Trim the pastry to fit the top of the pie dish. Dampen the rim of the dish with water and use the trimmings to cover the rim of the dish. Dampen the rim of pastry with water and lift the large piece of pastry over the top. Press down around the rim of the dish to seal the pastry and knock-back the edges. Make 2 holes in the top to allow steam to escape during cooking.
Brush the top of the pastry with egg glaze. Place on a baking tray and bake in the centre of the oven for 25–30 minutes until the pastry is golden.
A simple meal of fish and chips, prepared and cooked in an hour. A chunky piece of fresh white fish (haddock or cod), coated in fresh breadcrumbs, and shallow fried for just 10 minutes. Served with home cooked fries and ready to be doused with ketchup and vinegar.
You will also need a large frying pan/skillet or sauté pan for the fish and a large baking sheet, covered with baking parchment, for the chips.
Adjust oven rack to the lowest level and preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)
For the chips
Peel potatoes and slice into ½ inch thick rounds and then into ½ inch thick strips. Pat dry and place in a bowl.
Drizzle with oil and season well. Toss until evenly coated.
Spread out on the baking sheet and bake for about 30 minutes, turning 2 or 3 times until browned.
For the fish
Meanwhile, prepare the fish. Spread the flour on a plate and season. Then spread breadcrumbs on a second plate. Beat the egg in a shallow bowl.
Pat dry the fish with kitchen paper. Taking one fillet at a time, coat it in the flour, gently shaking off any excess. Then dip it in the beaten egg and coat in the breadcrumbs. Set aside on a clean plate and repeat with the remaining fish.
While the chips are cooking in the oven the fish can be cooked on the hob. Heat the frying pan/skillet over a medium heat and pour in enough oil to just cover the bottom. When the oil is hot, add the fish and gently fry for about 4–5 minutes until golden and crisp on the underside. Carefully turn and repeat on the other side. The fish may have to be cooked in two batches. Lift the fish from the pan and place on a warmed plate covered with kitchen paper to absorb any oil. Cover the plate with foil and keep warm while cooking the rest of the fish.
Serve immediately garnished with the lemon wedges.
Prepares: 4 servings (photograph shows a serving for 2)
Preparation time: About 25 minutes
Cooking time: 55 minutes
900g (2 lb) potatoes, (6 medium)
4 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
6 plum tomatoes, halved, OR
12 tinned/canned plum tomatoes*
4 x 170g (6 oz) salmon fillets, skinned
20 black olives, pitted (optional)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
150ml (5 fl oz) dry white wine (⅔ cup)
2 tbsp lemon juice
knob of butter
basil leaves to garnish
accompany with a fresh green vegetable
You will also need a 2.4 litre (4½ pint) ovenproof dish for this recipe.
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6).
Peel and cut the potatoes into even-sized large pieces. Then parboil in boiling, salted water for 10 minutes. Drain and leave to cool for about 5 minutes until they become cool enough to handle. Now cut into 5mm (¼ inch) slices.
Brush the dish with 1½ tablespoons olive oil. Then layer the potato slices in the dish and drizzle over another 1½ tablespoons of the oil. Spread the garlic slices over the potatoes and top with the tomatoes. Drizzle with the remaining one tablespoon oil, season and bake in the oven for 40 minutes.
Ten minutes before the end of cooking, start preparing the salmon fillets. Slash each salmon fillet three times across the top and season. Heat a large non-stick frying pan/skillet and add a good sized knob of butter. When the butter begins to sizzle, lay the salmon fillets in the pan/skillet and sear for one minute on both sides.
Remove from the pan/skillet and lay the salmon fillets on top of the potatoes. Scatter with the olives (if using), and pour the wine and lemon juice over the fish. Then cover with foil and return to the oven for a further 15 minutes.
To serve, garnish with basil leaves and accompany with a green vegetable.
For this recipe you will need a large frying pan/skillet with lid and a 2.25 litre (4 pint) ovenproof dish
Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F) (gas 5).
Peel and cut potatoes into large chunks. Cook in boiling, salted water for about 20 minutes until tender. Drain and set aside.
Next, cut the broccoli into bite-sized florets, about 115g (4 oz) (1 cup). Not all the head of broccoli will be needed.
Remove the stalks from the dill and reserve. Chop dill leaves and put to one side.
Put the fish into the frying pan/skillet and pour over the water and wine. Add seasoning, dill stalks and lemon slices. Cover. Bring slowly to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes or until just cooked.
Remove from the heat. Discard the dill stalks and lemon slices. Strain and reserve the cooking liquor. Lay the fish in the ovenproof dish. Flake into chunks using a fork and check for bones.
Add the prawns/shrimps and broccoli.
Melt the butter in the frying pan/skillet and stir in the flour to form a smooth paste. Remove from the heat and slowly add the reserved cooking liquor, stirring constantly, until the sauce is smooth. Return to the heat and bring to the boil. Then reduce the heat and cook for 1 minute, stirring continuously, until the sauce has thickened. Add the cream, chopped dill leaves, and season. Now pour the sauce over the fish.
Mash the potatoes, adding just enough milk to create a creamy mash. Season well.
Cover the fish with spoonfuls of the potato. Don’t flatten the spoon shapes out, you are after a bumpy look. Sprinkle with the breadcrumbs and pour the melted butter over the top.
Bake for 40–45 minutes until piping hot and lightly browned.
Haddock and Prawn Fish Pie with a Chive and Cheesy Mash
Prepares: 4 servings
Preparation time: 40 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
For the fish pie
300ml (10 fl oz) full fat (whole milk) (1¼ cups)
450g (1 lb) haddock, skinned (cod will work too)
40g (1½ oz) butter (3 tbsp)
40g (1½ oz) flour (¼ cup)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
150 ml soured cream (⅔ cup)
200g (7 oz) frozen peeled king prawns/jumbo shrimps, thawed
115g (4 oz) frozen peas, thawed (¾ cup)
For the chive and cheesy mash
900g (2 lb) floury potatoes, peeled and cut into even sized pieces (6 medium)
55g (2 oz) Cheddar cheese, grated (½ cup)
90ml (3 fl oz) full fat (whole milk) (⅓ cup)
8g (¼ oz) fresh chives, chopped (2 tbsp)
A green leafy vegetable
You will also need a deep sided frying pan/skillet and a 2 litre ovenproof dish.
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)
Put the potatoes in a pan, cover with water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until tender. Drain.
Meanwhile, pour the milk into the frying pan/skillet and add the haddock. Bring slowly to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and, using a slotted spoon or spatula, carefully transfer the fish to a plate and set aside. Reserve the milk.
Over a medium heat, melt the butter in a separate pan. Stir in the flour to form a paste and gently cook for 1 minute. Gradually whisk the reserved milk into the flour until there is a smooth sauce. Bring to the boil, stirring continuously, then reduce the heat and simmer for 2–3 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Season to taste.
Stir in the soured cream, prawns/shrimps, and peas, and gently heat for a further 2 minutes.
Break the haddock into small cubes, about 2.5cm (1 inch) and add to the sauce. Spoon the mixture into the ovenproof dish.
Mash the cooked potatoes and, when smooth, beat in the grated cheese and enough milk to make a creamy mash, then fold through the chopped chives. Spoon over the fish and bake for 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
700g (1 lb 8 oz) cod or haddock, skinned and cubed
170g (6 oz) cooked tiger prawns/shrimp
knob of butter
3 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
Serve with sugar snap peas/mange tout or peas
For this recipe, you'll need a 1.2 litre/2 pint shallow ovenproof dish
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)
Peel the sweet potato and cut into even sized pieces. Simmer in lightly salted water until just tender, about 15 minutes. Then drain and set aside.
Cut the florets from the head of broccoli into small pieces. You will need 170g (6 oz) of the florets (1½ cups).
Next, pour the milk in a pan and add the flour and butter. Whisk continuously over a moderate heat until the sauce begins to boil and has thickened. Remove from the heat, season. and stir in 115g (4 oz) (1 cup) of the grated cheese. Beat until the cheese has melted.
Spoon a thin layer of the sauce over the base of the ovenproof dish. Layer the cubes of fish over the sauce and scatter over the prawns/shrimp and broccoli florets. Then pour over the remaining sauce.
Mash the sweet potato with the butter and stir in the parsley. Season well. Spoon on top of the fish and then sprinkle over the remaining cheese.
Bake in the oven for 30–35 minutes until the top is golden and the sauce is bubbling.
Serve with the sugar snap peas/mange tout or peas.
Ovenproof dish, greased. It should be large enough to lay the fish in a single layer.
Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) gas 4
Bring rice to the boil in 360ml (12 fl oz) (1½ cups) lightly salted water. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. For brown rice, simmer for 15 minutes and for white rice simmer for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, remove the skin from the tomatoes. Put them in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave for one minute. Carefully, remove from the water and gently peel away the skin. (It should come away very easily.) Set aside.
Lightly season the fish with thyme and pepper.
Once the rice has finished simmering for the appropriate time, spread the rice and the remaining water from the pan in the ovenproof dish. It will not be fully cooked at this point. Then lay the fish on top of the rice in a single layer and sprinkle the wine over the fish. Slice the tomatoes and arrange over the fish.
Melt the butter in a frying pan/skillet add the onion and garlic, and cook over a low heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Mix in the breadcrumbs and parsley, then scatter over the tomatoes.
Cover the dish with foil and bake for 15 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for a further 10 minutes until the fish is cooked through and the topping golden brown.
Cut the lemon into four slices and use to garnish.
3 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), yolks only
170g (6 oz) butter, cut into small cubes (¾ cup, or ½ sticks)
1 tbsp parsley, chopped
1 tbsp chives, chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper
baby potatoes and green beans
large shallow frying pan/skillet with lid
Lay the salmon fillets side by side in the shallow pan/skillet along with the bay leaf and peppercorns. Cut four slices from the lemon and add them to the pan. Cover with cold water and add the lid. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat and leave for 5 minutes to finish cooking the salmon.
Meanwhile, squeeze 1 tablespoon juice from the rest of the lemon and add to a small pan along with the vinegar. Bring to the boil then let it bubble rapidly over a medium heat until it has reduced by half. Put to one side to cool a little, while bringing a little water to a gentle simmer in another pan.
Whisk together the egg yolks in a bowl that will fit over the pan of simmering water and then add the cooled vinegar and lemon juice. Place the bowl over the pan and add the butter, one cube at a time, whisking until it has melted. Continue whisking until all the butter has been added and the sauce has thickened.
Remove the bowl immediately from the heat and stir in the herbs, and season.
Using a fish slice, drain the salmon fillets then pour over the sauce.
A tasty way of serving fish that is quick to prepare and just right for a summer supper. A thick fillet of sole is grilled/broiled smothered in tiny broccoli florets and a cheesy sauce until the sauce is bubbling and golden.
170g (6 oz) broccoli florets (a medium head of broccoli)
40g (1½ oz) butter (3 tbsp or ⅜ stick)
40g (1½ oz) flour (¼ cup + 1 tbsp)
300ml (10 fl oz) milk (1¼ cups)
115g (4 oz) cheese, grated (1 cup)
4 large sole fillets (each weighing about 170g (6 oz)
salt and pepper
1 tbsp lemon juice
butter for greasing
28g (1 oz) Parmesan, grated
Baby new potatoes
A vegetable steamer
A large baking tray/sheet
Preheat the grill/broiler to high.
Cut the broccoli florets from the head of the broccoli and then trim and discard the stems. Separate into 1cm (½ inch) chunks and then steam for about 2 minutes until just tender. Remove the steamer from the pan and set to one side.
Heat the milk in the microwave for 1 minute to warm it through. Melt the butter in a small pan then add the flour and stir until smooth. Let this cook gently at a low heat for about 2 minutes until it starts to bubble. Then remove from the heat and gradually add the milk, stirring continuously until there is a smooth sauce. Return to the heat and bring the sauce to the boil, stirring continuously, until it has thickened. Now remove from the heat and stir the cheese into the sauce to melt it. (Just use the heat of the sauce to melt the cheese. Don’t put the pan over heat on the stove as this will make the cheese go oily.) Set to one side.
Season the fish with the salt and pepper and then sprinkle over the lemon juice.
Grease the baking tray/sheet and place under the grill/broiler for 1 minute to heat up.
Now lay the fish on the tray/sheet in a single layer. They will sizzle as they touch the hot baking tray/sheet.
With the grill/broiler rack 7.5cm (3 inches) from the heat, cook the fish for just 3 minutes and then remove.
Spoon the broccoli evenly over the fish and then, using a large palette knife, spread the cheese sauce over the broccoli. Finally sprinkle over the grated Parmesan. Then return the baking tray/sheet to the grill/broiler and cook for a further 4 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling and beginning to turn golden.
Sprinkle a pinch of cayenne pepper over each piece of fish and serve immediately.
2 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), hard-boiled
French fries and peas
A large lidded frying pan/skillet and a shallow flameproof dish.
Slice half the lemon and juice the other half.
Lay the haddock in a single layer in a lidded pan. Add milk, lemon slices and juice, parsley sprigs and peppercorns. Bring to the boil, turn off the heat, cover and leave for 15 minutes until the haddock can be flaked. Strain, reserving the milk. Then flake the fish and place in the flameproof dish.
Preheat the grill/broiler to high.
Next, melt the butter in a pan and stir in the flour. Cook over a low heat for 1 minute. Gradually stir in the reserved milk until there is a smooth sauce, then bring to the boil. Remove from the heat, season and stir in the chopped parsley. Pour the sauce over the fish and then sprinkle with cheese.
Place the haddock under the grill/broiler and cook for about 5 minutes until bubbling and the cheese is golden brown.
While the fish is under the grill/broiler, shell the eggs and chop.
Once the fish is ready, garnish with the chopped egg.