The other day we were walking through our local market on Lower Tachbrook Street and noticed that our favourite fishmonger had some Megrim sole for sale at a very reasonable price so we bought one which was big enough for the two of us.
Now consumers frequently fail to see megrim because of its unfamiliar name. It is usually caught off the Cornish coast, the Irish Sea and is frequently found in Scottish waters.
We love it grilled or roasted whole with plenty of butter, olive oil, parsley and lemon and served with steamed or boiled new potatoes and fresh garden peas mixed with baby broad beans.
The recipe below is the one we have always used for dinner parties and can be used with all varieties of sole and flatfish.
Serves / Makes: 2
Prep-Time: 5 minutes
Cook-Time: 8 to 10 minutes
- 2 tablespoons, plain flour for dusting
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1 pinch, freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon, vegetable oil
- 800 grams, Megrim sole, either
whole on the bone or 4 x 200g megrim sole fillets, trimmed and skinned, if you
have a good relationship with your fishmonger why not ask him to do this for
- 40 grams, salted butter
- ½ lemon
- 1 tablespoon, chopped parsley
- 2 teaspoons baby capers
Season the flour, coat the sole both sides with the flour and knock off any excess, we find it best to put the flour into a bag and then add the fish and gently shake until the fish is coated.
Heat the oil in a large well seasoned or a non–stick frying pan, add the sole, lower the heat slightly, and add 20 grams of butter, fry on a moderate heat for 4 to 5 minutes, turn over, and allow to cook through.
Lift the fish on to serving plate and keep warm. Now wipe the frying pan clean, and add the remaining butter and allow to melt over a moderate heat, once the butter starts to froth and smell nutty and it turns a light brown, add the lemon juice, capers, and parsley. Check the seasoning and pour the brown butter over the sole. Serve with a lemon wedge and Enjoy!
Pan frying fish, The French call it “sauté,” it’s a great way of cooking most types of fish fillets as well as some whole fish. Pat the fish dry with clean kitchen paper and make 3 or 4 shallow slashes across the skin side of the fish and portion the fillets if necessary.
Heat a non-stick frying pan or skillet until hot, add a little olive or sunflower oil. Lay the fish into the pan away from you skin side down so that any oil that might splash from the pan doesn’t burn you.
Allow the fish to start to crisp up, turn the heat down and allow it to cook until almost finished cooking; then leave the fish in the pan for a couple of minutes to finish cooking. If you are cooking fillets, turn them over on to the flesh side and immediately turn the heat off. There will be sufficient residual heat in the pan to finish the cooking process.
If you are cooking a whole fish, place the pan into a hot oven (200C / 380-400F) and leave until cooked; this will depend on the thickness of the fish.
Squeeze Lemon juice over the fish and season to taste with sea salt and black pepper, add extra virgin olive oil to taste.
As the fillets of fish start to cook, the cut sides will change colour from raw opaque to creamy white cooked. The more that the colour changes the closer to being cooked they are, when light pressure on a fillet starts to separate its flakes, it is cooked.