Monkfish with Bubble and Squeak cake, garlic spinach, poached egg and cream sauce

Recipe courtesy of Hello Magazine many years ago.

Monkfish with Bubble and Squeak

Serves : 4

Ingredients – Bubble and Squeak :
6 medium potatoes, boiled and mashed
6 small shallots, blanched in boiling water until softened
1 parsnip, blanched and chopped
6 Brussels sprouts, blanched and chopped
450g (1 lb) green cabbage, blanched and chopped
Salt and pepper
Olive oil

Ingredients – Spinach :
A large bunch of spinach leaves, stalks removed
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed

Ingredients – Cream Sauce :
2 shallots, peeled and finely chopped
15g (1/2 oz) clarified butter
150ml (1/4 pt) double cream
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp crème fraiche

Other Ingredients :
4 x 150g (5oz) pieces of monkfish tail fillet
4 poached eggs

Step One : Preheat the oven to 200oC / 400oF / Gas Mark 6. Mix together the potato, shallots, parsnip, sprouts, cabbage and seasoning with a dash of olive oil and spread out in a roasting tin. Roast for approximately 40 minutes until golden.

Step Two : Rinse the spinach and cook in a pan with the garlic and the rinsing water on the heat for a few minutes until wilted.

Step Three : For the sauce, saute the shallots in the butter until softened. Add the cream and bring to the boil. Stir in the mustard and whisk for 3 minutes before adding the crème fraiche.

Step Four : Fry the monkfish in a hot pan in a little olive oil, searing over a high heat on all sides to begin with and then lowering the heat or transferring to the oven to finish cooking.

Step Five : To serve, cut four round cakes from the bubble and speak and top with the spinach and monkfish. Place the eggs alongside and spoon around the sauce.

Wild Salmon Sashimi, Spring Onion, Shiso Leaf and Yuzzo dressing

Recipe taken from Hello Magazine many years ago.

Wild Salmon

Serves : 4

Ingredients :
700g (1 1/2 lb) salmon fillet, any bones removed
100ml (4 fl oz) yuzzo
Juice of 2 oranges
Juice of 2 limes
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp finely chopped fresh ginger
100ml (4 fl oz) olive oil
100ml (4 fl oz) Japanese soy sauce

To garnish :
Finely sliced spring onion
Japanese pickled ginger
Shiso leaves

To serve :
Wasabi paste
Soy sauce

Step One : Slice the salmon as thinly as possible and arrange on four serving plates.

Step Two : Whisk together the yuzzo, orange juice, lime juice, lemon juice, ginger, olive oil and soy sauce and spoon 2-3 tablespoons over each serving.

Step Three : Scatter the sliced spring onion, ginger and shiso leaves over the top and serve with wasabi paste and soy sauce for dipping.

Pan-fried Diver Scallops, baby fennel, tomato, lemon and coriander

Recipe courtesy of Hello Magazine many years ago.

Pan-fried Diver Scallops

Serves : 4

Ingredients :
50ml (2 fl oz) lemon juice, plus an extra squeee
150ml (1/4 pt) olive oil, plus a little extra for frying
1 tblsp crushed coriander seeds
4 bulbs of baby fennel
A handful of fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
8 plum tomatoes, peeled, deseeded and diced
Rock salt and black pepper
12-16 diver-caught scallops, depending on size, roes removed

Salad :
1 bag of rocket
A handful of chervil sprigs
6 tblsp vinaigrette dressing

Step One : Mix together the lemon juice, olive oil and coriander and leave for several hours.

Step Two : Blanch the baby fennel in a pan of salted boiling water for 3-4 minutes or until just tender but still with a little bit of crunch.

Step Three : Pour the lemon, oil and coriander mixture into a pan and heat until it comes to the boil. Add the basil, tomatoes, fennel and seasoning. Keep over a gentle heat while you fry the scallops.

Step Four : Heat a heavy non-stick frying pan, add a little olive oil and when very hot fry the scallops until coloured on one side. Turn over, season with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice and colour on the other side, taking care not to overcook them.

Step Five : Spoon the vegetables and cooking liquid on to serving plates. Toss the rocket and chervil with the vinaigrette. Arrange the scallops on the plates and pile the rocket salad in the centre. Serve at once.

Citrus Prawn Ceviche Tostadas with Charred Sweetcorn and mashed avocado

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (October 2018) and taken from “Salad Feasts: How to assemble the perfect meal” by Jessica Elliott Dennison.

Prawn ceviche

Serves : 4

Preparation time : 35 mins

Ingredients :
8 small shop-bought corn tortillas
1 tblsp vegetable oil
60g tinned sweetcorn in water (drained weight)
250g peeled raw king prawns
Juice of 3 limes
2 baby shallots or 1 banana shallot, peeled
3/4 tsp chilli flakes
1 grapefruit
4 radishes, finely sliced
2 avocados, halved and stones removed

Step One : First, preheat the oven to 180oC / Gas Mark 4.   Divide the tortillas between a few baking trays, brush with the oil, then bake for 5-8 minutes, or until golden and crisp.  Set aside to cool.

Step Two : Meanwhile, heat a medium frying pan, until smoking.  Rinse the sweetcorn, drain completely, then add to the pan (you don’t need any oil).  Cook for 3-5 minutes or until nicely charred with little black marks.  Transfer to a place to cool.

Step Three : Next, if not already deveined, make a small incision along the back of the prawns and remove the dark black line (the digestive tract).  Place the prawns in a medium dish or bowl, then squeeze in the limes.  Slice the shallots into rounds as finely as you can and add to the bowl along with the chilli flakes.  Leave for 7 minutes, then turn the prawns over and leave for another 7 minutes.  By this point, they should be pink and ‘cooked’.

Step Four : Next, cut away the top and bottom of the grapefruit, then carefully slice away the peel and white pith.  Slice out each segment, then finely chop the flesh (discard the membranes).  Add to the prawns along with any grapefruit juice.  Gently stir in the radishes.

Step Five : Scoop out the avocado flesh and roughly mash with a fork.

Step Six : Take the crispy tortillas, ceviche mixture charred sweetcorn and mashed avocado to the table in attractive serving dishes.  Allow everyone to build their own tostadas.

Step Seven : You can also shallow fry the tortillas in a pan of hot vegetable oil until golden.  Be sure to drain on kitchen paper, seasoned with salt.

Feast from the East – Steamed Hake with Garlic Oil and Oyster Sauce

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (February 2017) and taken from “Malaysia : Recipes from a Family Kitchen” written by MasterChef 2014 winner, Ping Coombes.

Steaming fish is a great way to cook it as it stays moist and it locks in all the nutrients. This recipe also works well with seabass and salmon.  Bear in mind, cooking time will vary with different fish.

Steamed HakeServes : 2

Ingredients :
1 spring onion, finely sliced lengthways into strips
small handful of coriander leaves, torn
2 hake fillets (about 150g each), skin on
2 tblsp Garlic oil
2 tblsp oyster sauce

Step One : Place the steamer ring at the bottom of a wok.  Boil some water and pour it into the wok, up to the level of the ring.  Place the wok over a medium heat, and bring it to the boil, then lower the heat a little.

Step Two : Place the spring onion strips in a bowl of ice-cold water with the coriander: this will keep them fresh while the fish steams.

Step Three : Place the hake fillets, skin-side up, in a shallow, heat-proof bowl, making sure they are not overlapping, then add the Garlic oil and oyster sauce.

Step Four : Transfer the bowl to the steam ring, cover the wok and steam for 5 minutes.  Uncover and add three-quarters of the spring onion and coriander leaves to the bowl.  Recover and steam for a further 8 minutes.

Step Five : Carefully remove the bowl from the wok, sprinkle the rest of the spring onion and coriander leaves over the fish and serve immediately.

Salute the Salad : Poached Salmon, Almond and Grapefruit Couscous

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (May 2016) and taken from “Savour : Salads for all seasons” by Peter Gordon.

For this light, healthy meal, poach the salmon in a pan wide and deep enough to hold the pieces in one layer.  The couscous can also be served with other meats.

Poached salmonServes 2 as a main course

Serve warm or at room temperature

Ingredients :
100g couscous
1 carrot, peeled and coarsely grated (shredded)
1 tblsp extra virgin olive oil
2 spring onions
1 small handful of flat-leaf parsley, still on the stalk
1 grapefruit
2 salmon fillets (150-175g each), bones removed but skin left on
3 tblsp flaked almonds, lightly toasted and roughly chopped
1 small handful salad leaves (perhaps use pea shoots)
1 lemon, halved

Step One : Mix the couscous with 100ml of tepid water and 1/4 tsp of salt, and leave for 5 minutes.  Mix in the grated carrot and olive oil and leave for 5 minutes.  Trim both ends from the spring onions.  Thinly slice the green parts and mix into the couscous.  Pick the parsley leaves from their stalks, coarsely shred and add to the couscous.  Put the parsley stalks and spring onion white ends in a separate pan.  Add water to a depth of 4 cm and 1 tsp of salt, bring to the boil then reduce to a rapid simmer.  Peel three strips of rind from the grapefruit, avoiding any white pith, add to this poaching stock as it heats up.

Step Two : Gently lower the salmon pieces into the stock, skin side facing down, and bring back to the boil.  Turn off the heat, put a lid on the pan and leave for 8-10 minutes, by which time it will be cooked (if the salmon is thin, and submerged, leave it for no more than 4-5 minutes).

Step Three : Meanwhile, segment the grapefruit, cutting off the peel and pith.  Cut each segment into three or four pieces and mix into the couscous along with the almonds and any juice you can squeeze from the grapefruit core.

Step Four : To serve, divide the couscous among your plates and sit the salad leaves on top.  Remove the salmon carefully from the poaching liquid and lay on a plate, skin side facing up.  Peel off the skin and carefully scrape away any dark-coloured flesh (and blood line) under the skin using a teaspoon.  Break the salmon into flakes and sit it on top of the couscous.  Tuck in a lemon half and serve.

Smoked Trout with Chicory, Apple and Almond Slaw

Flavours and textures that work together in the same way as Waldorf salad. Crunchy apple and leaves, toasted almonds and fresh dill, all delicious with the trout. If you want to make the slaw in advance, fold the sliced apple in some lemon juice before combining with the other ingredients to prevent browning, and reserve the toasted almonds until you are ready to serve.

Serves : 4

The Dressing Ingredients:
2 tblsp dill, roughly chopped
125ml (4 fl oz) soured cream or crème fraiche
A good squeeze of lemon juice
Seasoning, to taste

The Salad Ingredients:
200g (7oz) smoked trout fillet, torn into slivers
2 sweet apples, cored, halved and sliced into fine batons
2 medium heads of chicory, separated into leaves and finely sliced lengthways
2 heaped tblsp flaked almonds, lightly tasted in a hot, dry frying pan

Step One : Beat together the dressing ingredients and fold into the salad ingredients (reserve a few flaked almonds).

Step Two : Arrange a small pile of slaw on each plate, top with slivers of trout and dress with remaining almonds.

Linguini with Mussels and Walnut Parsley Pesto

A Delia Smith recipe taken from the Radio Times many years ago.

Serves : 4

For me, Mussels are still a luxury food that cost very little money. I don’t think anything can match their exquisite, fresh-from-the-sea flavour. In this recipe every precious drop of mussel juice is used which gives a lovely concentrated flavour. Now that mussels come ready cleaned and prepared, it make the whole thing very simple and easy: all you have to do is put them in cold water, then pull off any beardy strands with a sharp knife, using them as soon as possible and discard any that don’t close tightly when given a sharp tap.

Ingredients:
900g (2 lb) mussels, cleaned and prepared
175g (6oz) linguini or other pasta
1 tblsp olive oil
1 shallot, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
175ml (6 fl oz) dry white wine
Salt and freshly milled black pepper.

For the pesto:
10g ( ½ oz) walnuts, chopped
25g (1oz) curly parsley, leaves only
1 clove garlic, peeled
2 tblsp olive oil
Salt and freshly milled black pepper.

To serve: 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Step One : First prepare the pesto: select a large pan that will hold the mussels comfortably, then in it heat a tablespoon of olive oil and sauté the walnuts in the hot oil to get them nicely toasted on all sides – this will take 1-2 mins. Place the walnuts and any oil left in the pan into a liquidiser or food processor, add the parsley and garlic, the remaining tablespoon of oil and seasoning, then blend everything to make a puree.

Step Two : Next you need to deal with the mussels: heat the olive oil in the same pan that you sautéed the walnuts in, add the shallot and chopped garlic and cook these over a medium heat for about 5 mins or until they’re just soft. Now turn the heat up high, tip in the prepared mussels and add the wine and some salt and pepper. Put on a closely-fitting lid, turn the heat down to medium and cook the mussels for about 5 mins, shaking the pan once or twice or until they have all opened.

Step Three : During those 5 mins bring another large pan of salted water up to the boil. Then when the mussels are cooked, remove them from the heat and transfer them to a warm bowl using a slotted spoon and shaking each well so that no juice is left inside. Keep 8 mussels aside still in their shells, for a garnish. Then remove the rest from their shells and keep them warm, covered with foil in a low oven.

Step Four : Then place a sieve lined with muslin or gauze over a bowl and strain the mussel liquor through it. This is very important as it removes any bits of sand or grit that get lodged in the shells.

Step Five : Now it’s time to pop the pasta into the boiling water and put a timer on for 8 mins (some pasta might need 10 mins so follow the instructions on the packet). Then pour the strained mussel liquor back into the original saucepan and fast-boil to reduce it by about one third. After than turn the heat to low and stir in the pesto.

Step Six : Now add the shelled mussels to the pesto sauce and remove from the heat. As soon as the pasta is cooked, quickly strain it into a colander and divide it between two hot pasta bowls. Spoon the mussels and pesto over each portion, add the mussels in their shells and scatter over the parsley. Serve absolutely immediately with some well-chilled white wine.

Smoked Haddock Fishcakes

Home-made fish cakes really are worth every minute spent making them.  For a change, try adding a few chopped cooked prawns to the basic mixture.

smoked haddock fish cakes

Makes :   10
Prep time :  30 minutes plus chilling
Cook time :  30 minutes

Ingredients:
450g (1 lb) floury potatoes
25g (1oz) butter
Salt and pepper
700g (1 1/2lb) smoked haddock fillet, skinned
100ml (4 fl oz) milk
125g (4oz) sweetcorn
Grated rind of 1 lemon
2 tblsp (30ml) each chopped fresh chives and parsley
Salt and pepper
50g (2oz) plain flour
2 eggs
125g (4oz) fine fresh white breadcrumbs
1 tblsp (15ml) sunflower oil

Step One : Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water until tender, drain well.  Mash with the butter and season with salt and pepper.

Step Two : Meanwhile, poach the haddock fillet in the milk for about 10 minutes or until it begins to flake.  Drain and break up fillet into large pieces.

Step Three : Add the cooked fish, sweetcorn, grated lemon rind, chives, parsley, salt and pepper to the mashed potatoes.  Leave to cool.

Step Four : Shape the mixture into tend equal sized rounds.  Season the flour.  Dip each round into the seasoned flour, then the beaten egg, followed by the fresh white breadcrumbs to coat.  Chill until ready to cook.

Step Five : Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan and cook the fishcakes for about 3-4 minutes each side or until they are golden brown.  Keep warm in a low oven if cooking in batches.

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Thai-Steamed Snapper

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (Dec 2015) and taken from At Home with Umami: Home-cooked recipes unlocking the magic of super-savory deliciousness by Laura Santtini.

Umami translates from the Japanese to mean ‘savoury deliciousness.’  Santtini says umami is, ‘the ultimate expression of flavour; the extra mouthful-ness that makes us say “mmmmm”, the taste that keeps on giving long after its fellow basic tastes – sweet, salty, sour and bitter – are spent.’

Brilliant for a dinner party, you can also use this versatile marinade for fish fillets.  This fish is ideal served with sticky Thai-style rice and a crisp green salad.

Serves : 4

Ingredients:

red snapper11 whole red snapper or other whole sustainable white fish (about 2kg), descaled, gutted and cleaned
4 limes (1 sliced)
1 bunch fresh coriander
1 bunch of spring onions, topped and sliced (reserve tops for stuffing fish)
1 sweet potato, diced into thumbnail-sized pieces
2.5cm (1 in) piece of fresh ginger, sliced
5 garlic cloves, peeled
3 lemongrass stalks, outer skin removed and roughly chopped
2 red chillies, deseeded (keep the seeds of half a chilli only)
3 tblsp toasted sesame oil
4 tblsp fish sauce
3 tblsp soy sauce
1 tblsp brown sugar or palm sugar

Step One : Preheat the oven to 200oC (400oF) Gas 6.  Cut a piece of wide baking parchment twice the length of your fish.  Fold the parchment in half and then open it, placing one half on a baking tray.  Put the fish on the diagonal on the piece of parchment on the baking tray.

Step Two : Make slashes in the fish on the diagonal through the skin down to the bone on both sides.  Stuff the cavity with a few slices of lime, half the coriander and the tops of the spring onions.  Scatter sweet potato cubes and spring onion chunks around the fish.

Step Three : In a food processor, combine the rest of the coriander, ginger, garlic, lemongrass and chilli and blitz into a paste.  Add the sesame oil, fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar and the juice of the remaining 3 limes and blitz again.

Step Four : Rub this marinade all over the fish and fold the other half of the parchment over the fish, wrapping the edges over to close tightly.

Step Five : Cook in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.  To test if the fish is cooked, remove from the oven and take a peek inside a corner of the parcel, but be careful because the steam will escape.  If the eye of the fish has turned white, this means your fish is cooked.

Step Six : Open the parcel and serve large chunks of fish on sticky Thai rice topped with a large spoonful of the cooking juices – that is where move of the umami is.