Sautéed John Dory with Stuffed Courgette Flowers

Preparation info

  • Serves

    4

    • Difficulty

      Medium

Appears in

A Feast of Fish

A Feast of Fish

By Ian McAndrew

Published 1989

  • About

This makes a really pretty dish full of the colours of summer; the red of the tomato sauce against the yellow of the flowers makes a wonderful picture.

Ingredients

  • 2 X 900 g/2 lb John Dory
  • 4 finger-sized courgettes with their flowers
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 egg white
  • 150 ml/¼ pint double cream
  • 25 ml/1 fl oz dry sherry
  • freshly ground white pepper
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • A little oil for frying
  • 125 g/ oz butter
  • 450 ml/¾ pint tomato sauce

    Method

    Carefully wash the courgettes and flowers. Very gently remove all the flowers from the courgettes.

    Fillet the John Dory. Skin each fillet and break them into their 3 natural pieces each side. Cut each of the long pieces, 4 to each fish, in half at an acute angle, and put to one side. The 4 small pieces are to be used for the mousse.

    Cut the small fillets into small pieces and place in a blender or food processor along with the salt and process until a smooth paste. Add the egg white and mix in thoroughly until it stiffens. Remove from the blender and rub through a sieve. Place in a bowl set on crushed ice and gradually add two-thirds of the cream, followed by the sherry and seasoning. Test the mousse. If the mousse is a little firm, add more cream; the mousse needs to be really soft for this recipe.

    Place the mousse in a piping bag with a fairly fine nozzle. Carefully fill each flower about half full with the mixture. Fold the ends of the petals over to form a seal. Place each flower, folded end down, in a steaming basket along with the courgettes and steam for 4 minutes.

    While these are cooking, heat the oil in a frying pan and, when the oil is hot, add 15 g/½ oz of the butter. Season the fillets and carefully lay them in the pan. Fry on one side for about 30 seconds, then turn and fry on the other side for a further 30 seconds. Remove the fillets from the pan and drain on kitchen paper to remove any excess oil. Keep in a warm place. Bring the tomato sauce to the boil, remove from the heat and gradually whisk in the remaining butter until it has all melted.