Last year’s summer SeaFest was an absolute treat for a foodie. There was a whole day of food demonstrations by some outstanding chefs – and the best recipe of the lot, one which I’ve used and reused to constant acclaim, is this one from Christian Taylor of The Plough Inn at Scalby (just south of Scarborough). The Plough’s rooms, incidentally, are beautiful – comfort incarnate.
Christian is a creative and entrepreneurial chef. He’s developed an innovative smoked mayonnaise (more about this technique in a future post) as well as a number of unusual and appetising items on The Plough’s modern British menu.
This dish is a professional-level recipe easily achievable by mere mortals in the comfort of their own homes. It’s impressive, it tastes wonderful…and it’s not difficult – a home cook’s dream.
This is an ultimately elegant one-pot fish main. It’s a good idea to serve this main course in deep plates, as the sauce is the sublime.
Recipe for Christian Taylor’s Sea Trout with Brown Shrimp and Girolle Mushrooms
- 660g/1½ lbs sea trout (6 fillets) – if you can’t find sea trout you can use loch trout
- 500g/1 lb 2 oz sliced pink fir apple potatoes (lovely waxy variety, full of flavour) – or Roseval if they aren’t in season
- 190g/7 oz frozen peas (unfrozen and cooked in a little butter – go here for how)
- 2 baby gem lettuces cut vertically into quarters
- 200g/8 oz girolle mushrooms (in season June – October – outside the season try oyster mushrooms)
- 900 ml (3¾ cups) fish stock
- 900 ml (3¾ cups) double cream
- Bunch of chives
- 180g/8 oz brown shrimp (cooked and peeled)
- Cockles (optional, but they do make it look more exotic)
- Butter and olive oil for cooking
- Smoked salt and Indonesian long pepper
- Cook the new potatoes
- Warm the plates and an attractive jug or sauce boat.
- In the meantime, in a non-stick frying pan heat a drizzle of oil and a knob of butter until the butter stops crackling.
- Season the trout on both sides and drizzle with a little more oil
- Put the fish skin side down in the pan and leave to cook for a couple of minutes
- Heat the fish stock and cream together in a saucepan until they come to a rolling boil.
- When it’s boiling add the cooked new potatoes and allow the sauce to reduce by half
- Once the edges of the fish start to turn brown, check that the skin has turned crispy, then flip it over using a fish slice.
- Take the pan off the heat, and leave the fish in it to rest.
- To the cream sauce add the brown shrimp, the peas, the baby gem, the mushrooms. If using cockles add them, and cook all together until they open – a few minutes.
- Finely chop the chives and add most of them (saving some for garnish), together with some salt and pepper, to the sauce.
- Use a slotted spoon to serve the sauce, with the interesting ingredients clearly, and appetisingly visible, carefully place the fish on top, and garnish with the rest of the chives.
- Serve, drizzle over a little olive or lemon oil, and put the rest of the sauce in the warmed jug for people to help themselves.
This post is dedicated, of course and with thanks, to the very talented Christian Taylor