Top 50 Gastropubs

6

40 mins

Wild Sea Bass with capers, raisins and brown butter hollandaise

An outstanding fish dish from number one

Caper Raisin Dressing

1 shallot finely diced 

75 g golden raisin 

50 g baby capers

100g caster sugar

100g good quality white wine vinegar 

100 g salted butter

Hollandaise

3 egg yolks 

5 g white vinegar 

250 g brown butter 

Pinch salt 

1/2 tablespoons water  

Potatoes

Allow 6/7 potatoes per person

Two handfuls of samphire or agretti, chopped  

Fish

around 170g portions of seabass per person

Caper raisin dressing:

In a pan, bring up the sugar and water to the boil.

Pour over golden raisins and capers.

In a separate pan, melt the butter over a high heat until the butter turns golden, then add the shallots.

Remove from the heat and add to the soaked raisins. 

Hollandaise:

Whisk the yolks, vinegar, and salt over in a blender until creamy.

Heat the butter slowly until melted and brown/ golden.

Allow to cool slightly and then turn on the blender and slowly drizzle the brown butter into the yolk mixture.

You may need to add some water to help emulsify the sauce    

Allow sufficient time for the hollandaise to cool slightly, prior to starting to cook the fish. 

Potatoes:

Boil cleaned Jersey royal potatoes in salted water for 12 - 15 minutes (until soft and a knife passes through easily). 

Refresh in ice water, then peel.

When the fish is cooking, add the potatoes to a pan with butter and chopped agretti (or samphire). Season with lemon juice and a little salt (as agretti or samphire can be naturally salty). 

The fish:

Try to buy wild sea bass if you can. The bass should be as stiff as a board with bright red gills (this is how you will know it is the freshest possible fish). If not wild, then farmed fish will still do nicely.

Get your fishmonger to do all the hard yards by portioning to around 170g each

Gently score the skin and sprinkle liberally with sea salt. This allows the salt to penetrate and dry the skin and will help crisp the skin on cooking. 

Pre heat a non-stick frying pan for 2-3 minutes, add a splash of rapeseed oil and place the fish skin side down. Don't be tempted to move the fish.

Leave for two to three minutes basting the juices over the fish. 

Add a little butter and turn the heat off. With a fish slice, turn the fish over and leave to rest in the cooling pan for 1 / 2 minutes. 

Plate the fish, add a couple of spoons of the brown butter hollandaise to the centre of the dish and then scatter potatoes in a semi-circle as shown and dress with the raisin and caper dressing