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Located above Billingsgate Market in London's DocklandsOur location
Hake (Hake, Asparagus, Jersey Royal and Mint En Papilotte)
Gurnard (filleted and added to Merchants Fish Soup)
Lemon Sole (Lemon Sole with Artichokes, Creme fraiche and sage with Parmesan and Crumb Crust)
King Scallops (Steamed Scallops in the Shill with Sea Thon, Soy and Sesame oil)
Billingsgate Merchants Fish Soup
This is another favourite recipe at the school. Just about any fish or seafood can be used in the making of this and as we use many different species, we also make a point of making stock with the trimmings – and that is required for this recipe.
1kg (2.2 lbs) white fish fillets, such as gurnard fillets or hake
½ kg (1lb) mix of shellfish including prawns, mussels or clams, peeled/cleaned/de-bearded
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
100g pancetta, diced
1 red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
1 large leek, white part only, finely sliced
½ bulb Florence fennel, finely sliced
1 teaspoon tomato puree
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
150mls (1/4 pint) canned chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon thyme leaves
a generous pinch of saffron
1 – 2 teaspoon grated orange zest
75mls dry white wine
750mls fish stock
1. Prepare the fish: Cut the fish fillets into 3 – 4cm pieces, set aside. Peel, de-vein and butterfly the prawns and check the mussel/clams are closed and not cracked. Keep chilled until required.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, add the garlic, chilli, onion, leek and fennel, cook over a low heat for 4 – 5 minutes. Add the tomato puree and fennel seeds and continue to cook for another 2 minutes then add the remaining ingredients. Bring up to the boil, stirring occasionally and simmer vigorously for 8 - 10 minutes, until the oil and liquid are emulsified.
3. Add the fish fillets, prawns and mussels and cook over a low heat for 3 – 4 minutes or until nearly cooked and the mussels are beginning to open. Season to taste. Serve the soup with slices of toasted baguette and rouille.
There are many different recipes for this hot pepper and garlic paste. It originates from the Mediterranean and is classically served with fish soups and stews, such as bouillabaisse, but is delicious served with any fried fish and salt cod.
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 tablespoons harissa paste
3 red peppers, halved, deseeded, grilled and peeled
6 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons fresh white breadcrumbs
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
Blend the garlic, harissa and red peppers in a liquidizer until smooth. With the motor still running, very slowly pour the oil on to the purée. Add the breadcrumbs to bind the sauce. Season to taste with salt, pepper and stir in the mayonnaise.
Hake, Asparagus, Jersey Royals and Mint En Papilotte
4 x hake fillets
2 spears asparagus per serving
2 cooked and quartered Jersey Royals per serving
For the butter:
grated zest and juice 1 lime
small handful chopped mint
2 lemon wedges
1. Preheat the oven to 220C, gas mark 8. Cut out 4 large heart shapes using greaseproof paper. Arrange the potatoes on one half of a large sheet of good quality greaseproof paper. Put the hake fillet on top with the asparagus. Put a slice of butter on top and a couple of lemon wedges and sprinkle the fresh and roughly chopped mint over the top. Seal the parcel thoroughly.
Arrange the fish on the baking sheet. Cook for 10 minutes and the serve the parcel directly to your guest.
LEMON SOLE WITH ARTICHOKES,Sage and Crème Fraiche
2 lemon sole or witch, head removed and trimmed
For the filling
6 artichoke hearts in oil, drained and quartered
2 teaspoons chopped sage
4 tablespoons half fat crème fraiche
2 tablespoons fresh breadcrumbs
½ tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1. Heat the oven to 200C - gas mark 6.
2. Working on the dark skinned side of the fillet, make an incision straight down the back of the fish until you hit the bone. Lift the fillets as if quarter cross filleting, but leaving the fillets attached to the frill – just so that they have been ‘turned back’
Put onto a baking tray lined with tin foil.
3. Meanwhile mix the artichoke hearts with the sage and crème fraiche. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon the artichoke heart mixture down the centre of the fish and sprinkle with the breadcrumbs and cheese.
4. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until the breadcrumbs are lightly toasted and the fish fillets opaque and serve.
Steamed Scallops in the Shells with Seaweed and Lime
Serves 2 as a first course
4 scallops in their shells
Handful of seaweed, blanched and drained
Splash of sesame oil
Sprinkling of sesame seeds
Grated zest 1 lime
Juice of ½ lime
Splash of soy sauce
2 x 3cm strips of puff pastry
Freshly ground black pepper
1. Open the scallops with a strong knife and prepare. Remove and reserve the roes and cut the white meat in half horizontally.
2. Scrub the scallop shells (tops and bottoms) under running cold water and set aside.
3. Blanch in boiling water for 2 minutes, refresh with cold water and set aside.
4. Roll out the pastry and cut it into 3 strips long enough to run around the lip of the scallop shell. Preheat the oven to 220C/gas mark 8. Divide the seaweed mong the scallop shells. Put the roe and 3 rounds of the white meat on each shell and drizzle with the sesame oil, seeds, lime zest and juice and a splash of soy sauce. Put the empty shells on top of the filled shells and edge each with a strip of the pastry, brushed with the water, to seal completely. Bake in the oven for 10–12 minutes, according to the size of the scallops, and serve, still piping hot, directly in the shells. The pastry will be golden brown.