Pan-fried fillet of John Dory with white miso hollandaise & confit of baby fennel
Definitely do not judge this fish by its looks! – if you do want to have a go at cooking it, I would recommend buying it already filleted.
Meaty textured fish so will hold up well to pan frying as I have done in this recipe. If you’re trying to be healthier, poaching or grilling may be better alternatives as it goes well with a wide variety of ingredients.
Pan-fried fillet of John Dory, fennel confit & white miso hollandaise
Easy to cook white fish, firm textured with its mildly sweet flakes, very versatile & can stand up to strong flavours
- 2 x 150g John Dory fillets
- 2 x Tbsp Rapeseed oil
- 30g Unsalted butter
For the fennel confit
- 200g baby fennel, any large fronds & woody end removed. Keep any extra fronds for garnish, can also be chopped into salads.
- 250ml Olive oil
- 4-6 Allspice berries
- 4-6 Black peppercorns
- Small bunch of thyme
- 1 x Star anise
- 1 x small lemon sliced
- Few sea-salt flakes
- Place all the confit ingredients in a shallow baking dish, covering with the olive oil. Cover with tin foil and cook @ 160c/gas 3 for 1 ½ to two hours until tender.
- When cool enough to handle, drain of the oil and reserve – also keep two of the whole baby fennels to sauté later with the fish. Chop the rest of the fennel and purée with a little of the olive oil and 2 x tbsp of water along with a few sprigs of the fennel fronds until it is smooth and silky. Set aside for later.
- Place a pan onto a medium heat, add in the 2 tbsp rapeseed oil. Allow to heat and then lay the John Dory fillets skin-side down in the pan, gently pressing with a spatula or fish slice to keep the fillets flat. Cook for about 3 minutes until the skin is nice and crispy.
- Turn the fish over and continue cooking for a further 2-3 minutes on a medium-low heat, adding the butter. Allowing the butter to foam, spooning some of it over the fish. Squeeze in the baby fennel as well to heat, or grill separately if there is not enough room. Set aside until ready to assemble the dish. You can leave on some kitchen towel and cover with tin foil.
- Spoon some of the fennel purée onto the plate and place the baby fennel on top. Add the fish to the dish and spoon over some of the miso hollandaise. Enjoy.
Serve with a few baby potatoes, topped with some of the chopped fennel fronds. If you cannot find baby fennel just use the larger ones, cutting them smaller into evenly sized pieces.
White miso hollandaise
White miso with its salty umami flavour, complements this classic rich buttery sauce.
- 1 x Egg yolk
- 1 x Tsp white wine vinegar
- 100g Melted unsalted butter.
- 3 x Tsp warm water
- 1 X Tbsp olive oil from the fennel confit
- 1 x Tsp Miso Paste
1. Place a pan of water onto simmer. Whisk the egg yolk with the vinegar for a few minutes and then place over the pan, making sure the water is not boiling, and continue whisking until it starts to turn pale and slightly thick, start drizzling in the butter, keep whisking until fully emulsified – remove from the heat and drizzle in the olive oil and 3 x tsp warm water. Whisk in the miso until fully incorporated.
2. Keep warm until ready to use.
This is a semi fatty saltwater fish, which I have not had for a long time, so was glad to have the opportunity to pick some up at this local pop-up seafood stall near to where I live. Although a little more expensive, I think it’s worthwhile giving it a try if you’re looking for something different from hake or cod..