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Posts Tagged ‘jersey royals’

Roasted monkfish with thyme sprigs

We’ve been quite busy recently. Erika and I both have the week off work and have been out of the flat more than we have been in so there’s not been much to write about. This afternoon we found ourselves walking past a fishmonger and asked for some inspiration for something to go alongside some bits from the veg box – Jersey Royals, carrots and cabbage.

After a quick chat with the knowledgeable chap in the fishmonger we left with a wonderfully fresh piece of monkfish and a recipe:

Roasted Monkfish with Lemon and Thyme
Serves 2
Prep time: 10 minutes (plus 1 hour marinating)
Cooking time: 15 minutes

2x 130g monkfish fillets
2tbsp olive oil
juice and zest of half a lemon
10 sprigs of thyme
salt & pepper

To make the marinade, place the monkfish in a dish and add the olive oil, lemon zest and juice and the thyme. Season, mix well and leave in the fridge for up to an hour. In good time, preheat the oven to 200c.

Heat a dry frying pan over a high heat and add the fish, cooking for a couple of minutes each side until nicely browned. Add the leftover sprigs of thyme along with any remaining marinade and then place in the oven (still in the frying pan) for 6 or 7 minutes until the fish is cooked through.

We served the monkfish with Jersey Royals, carrots and cabbage – all simply boiled so we could really experience the flavours – from the veg box that Able & Cole delivered last Friday. I was a bit skeptical about the vegetables staying fresh after nearly a week; we’ve bought things from farmers’ markets before and they’ve not lasted the weekend, let alone seven days. Surprisingly, most of it had lasted well with just a few floppy carrots and one or two potatoes that were starting to go bad. Once cooked, the potatoes and vegetables tasted wonderful. The Jersey Royals were much better than those we’ve recently bought from supermarkets and the carrots and cabbage were full of flavour, again far superior to anything from the supermarket.

The fish itself was gorgeous. The outside of the fish had a delicate flavour of thyme whilst the inside was juicy and succulent. Monkfish is a firm, meaty fish and it handled the marinade well, despite having quite a mild flavour it was still able to hold its own against the flavours of lemon and thyme – altogether a delicious combination. Neither Erika nor I have had monkfish before but we’ll certainly be having it again (although perhaps not too often as it carried a hefty £38.99/kg pricetag!). Lesson learnt: speak to your fishmonger!

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Pan-fried salmon fillet, ratatouille and Jersey Royal potatoes

We had a couple of salmon fillets that we intended to simply pan-fry and serve with boiled Jersey Royals and vegetables – something along the lines of green beans or similar. Unfortunately, when we did our shopping on Monday evening, it was all a bit disasterous with low stocks of just about everything and frustration lead us to come home without everything we needed, including the veg. Luckily, we had a plan B! I’d bought some courgettes with the intention of cooking up some more summer vegetable soup last night, but I’d gone out for lunch so wasn’t feeling at all hungry. We also had a red pepper in the fridge for which we had no plans so ratatouille seemed like a good idea!

Ratatouille was one of my favourite meals as a child and has continued to be so; it’s great served with rice, a jacket potato, or even just a great hunk of crusty bread (it can also benefit from a sprinkling of grated cheddar cheese, mmm!)

Ratatouille
Serves 3-4 as a side dish (1-2 as suggested above)
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: as long as you can bear (at least 40 mins)

2 small onions
2 small courgettes
1 large pepper
1 400g tin chopped tomatoes
2 tsp tomato purée
olive oil
herbs (we usually use dried Herbs des Provence, but tonight had fresh thyme, fresh oregano and a couple of dried bay leaves)
salt and pepper

1. Chop the onions, courgettes and pepper into chunks. Heat some olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and add the onions and peppers to soften for about 10 minutes.

2. Add the courgettes to the pan along with any dried herbs and leave for a further 5 minutes, then stir through the tomato purée before adding the tin of chopped tomatoes. Season to taste, bring to the boil and simmer gently without a lid for at least 25 minutes or until the sauce has thickened. Ratatouille is one of those dishes that only gets better with time, so if you can leave it for longer than do so (it also tastes amazing the following day).

3. Stir in any fresh herbs and serve.

 

You can pretty much adjust the quanities of vegetables in this as much as you like – we usually use more peppers and less courgette, but it’s all down to personal taste. I think ratatouille traditionally includes aubergine as well, but I used to really dislike aubergine and have never got round to changing my recipe!

Ratatouille is so versatile and easy to cook and it’ll keep for a good few days in the fridge. It’s also low calorie and low fat (until you add cheese) and contibutes well to your 5-a-day. If you haven’t before, then do give it a try!

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Asparagus, Poached Egg and Chorizo

We bought some asparagus at the farmers’ market this weekend so scoured the web for some inspiration. Usually we have it on the side but this time I wanted it to be one of the main parts of the dish. Thankfully Hugh Fearnley-Wibblewobble came to the rescue with his recipe for asparagus, poached eggs and chorizo.

Erika is scared of poaching eggs (she was first time lucky with them 4 years ago and hasn’t managed a good one since) and I can’t remember ever doing them before so tonight’s dinner was a bit of a worry but except for slightly overcooked eggs it was wonderful. We’ll definitely have it again. Alongside we served some boiled jersey royals with a bit of butter.

I love this time of year – the light evenings, the delicious fruit and vegetables. There’s much wonderful food to eat too – I’m looking forward to cherries and gooseberries now that June has begun.

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Griddled sea bream

We’ve used Jersey Royals a lot recently. In Tapas, salad and sautéed with tuna/steak. Need to make the most of the season as they do taste so good. However, we’ve not actually eaten them as they should be – boiled in their skins.

Tonight we did just that, serving them with a whole sea bream which was cooked on the griddle, as well as some dwarf beans. We drizzled the fish with olive oil, ground over some salt and pepper then stuck a few sprigs of thyme inside, along with a bit more oil. Unfortunately the fish stuck and so our dreams of a crispy skin (and a nice photo) were sadly dashed but the rest of it was lovely. I really enjoy griddled food – we don’t have a garden so it’s the closest we can get to a BBQ – however I’ve always been unsuccessful with fish skin for some reason. Some quick research shows that the pan might need to be hotter so I’ll have to try that next time around.

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*stands up*. Hello, my name is Erika and… umm… I’m addicted to tuna steak. When the day comes that I’m famous enough to be invited onto Saturday Kitchen my food heaven will undoubtedly be a lovely, juicy piece of this wonderful fish (my food hell will be fresh coriander – bleurgh!). Rob decided he wanted steak tonight which, as I don’t eat beef (or lamb or pork or any other mammal for that matter), meant tuna was definitely on the menu for me.

Griddled tuna steak with sautéed Jersey Royal potatoes

Other than with salmon, I tend to like the flavour of my fish to come through, rather than have it masked in sauces or marinades and so tonight’s dinner simply required a little salt, pepper and olive oil plus a few minutes each side on the griddle. Annoyingly, when I cut into the tuna I realised I’d underestimated by a minute or so and it had turned out just a little bit rarer than I’d have liked, but better underdone than over I think!

We served our respective steaks with sautéed first-of-the-season Jersey Royal potatoes, which I feel was actually a bit of a mistake as their glorious flavour was lost in the process. We also had a side salad, but it wasn’t nearly exciting enough to deserve a photo!

Finally, can anyone explain the little bubbles that you can probably just see on my tuna?

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