Finally the evenings are getting longer and the evening light is perfect for photography and dining in the sun (not warmth quite yet unfortunately). Home to the countryside for Easter weekend and the warm days continued. Good Friday called for good food. Naturally. This dish seemed to personify the start of spring and a spring cleaning of the diet and lifestyle. Except if you’d given up chocolate for lent that is. You folks will probably be in a cocoa comma still….this dish may help?
- 2 seabass fillets
- 250g peas
- Handful mint leaves
- ½ lemon, juice
- Large knob butter
- 100g chorizo, chopped
- 2-3 parsnips, peeled and sliced
- 4 tbsp grated parmesan
- Parsnips – season well and coat in olive oil. Roast at 200°C for 25-30 minutes until tender and crisp.
- Parmesan wafer – Line a baking tray with non stick parchment and spoon the parmesan into a cookie cutter to form a circle – don’t be tempted to press the cheese down as it will melt on cooking. Bake for 5 minutes at 200°C until melted and golden. Remove from the oven and leave to cool before peeling gently from the parchment.
- Minted pea puree – boil the peas with half the mint leaves for a few minutes until soft. Drain while reserving the minty cooking water and tip into a food processor. Add a large knob of butter, salt and pepper, the fresh mint leaves, lemon juice and blend to a puree. Add some of the reserved cooking water a bit at a time to thin it down until you reach the desired consistency.
- Chorizo – heat a frying pan until hot. Fry the chorizo in the dry pan until it starts to release its oily juice and crisp up. Keep warm.
- Seabass- season the seabass fillets well making a slit in the skin side to stop it curling up on cooking. Coat in a light drizzle of olive oil. Heat a frying pan to a medium-high setting and fry the seabass fillets, skin side down, for about 3 minutes until crispy skinned and mostly cooked. Turn for the final minute to finish the cooking and squeeze with a splash of lemon juice.
- Top serve – lay the roasted parsnips on the plate and spoon on some pea puree. Top with the seabass and spoon over the chorizo and drizzle with some of the oils. Complete with the parmesan wafer!
Delicious served with a chilled glass of Italian, Puglian Verdeca. I had the pleasure of working at a recent event with the producer – Masserai Li Veli. Delicious. humble and organically produced wines. See here for where to buy some!