Baked Plaice with Chanterelles

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

  • serves

    4

Appears in

Darina Allen's Simply Delicious Suppers

Darina Allen's Simply Delicious Suppers

By Darina Allen

Published 2001

  • About

Chanterelles are in season from July to the end of September. We get ours from the old pine woods on the Beara Peninsula in West Cork. This dish can be served as a first course or as a main course, depending on the size of the fish. If chanterelles aren’t available, just serve the plaice with the herb butter.

Ingredients

  • 4 very fresh plaice on the bone
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 225 g fresh chanterelles
  • 55–110 g butter
  • 4 teaspoons fresh parsley or a mixture of parsley, chives
  • fennel and lemon thyme leaves, finely chopped

Method

Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5.

Turn the fish on it’s side and remove the head. Wash the fish and clean the slit very thoroughly. With a sharp knife, cut through the skin right round the fish, just where the ‘fringe’ meets the flesh. Be careful to cut neatly and to join the side cuts at the tail or it will be difficult to remove the skin later on.

Sprinkle the fish with salt and pepper and lay them in 7mm of water in a shallow baking tin. Bake in the preheated oven for 20–30 minutes according to the size of the fish. The water should have just evaporated as the fish is cooked. Check to see if the fish is ready by lifting the flesh from the bone at the head: it should lift off easily and be quite white with no trace of pink.

Pick over the chanterelles carefully and cut off the tough end bits. Wash quickly, drain on absorbent paper and cut into pieces. Melt 15 g butter and when it foams toss in the chanterelles and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Cook on high heat for 3–4 minutes or until soft.

Melt the remaining butter and stir in the freshly chopped herbs and chanterelles. Just before serving, catch the skin of the plaice down near the tail and pull it off gently (the skin will tear badly if not properly cut). Lift the fish on to hot plates and spoon the herb butter and chanterelles over it. Serve immediately.