This recipe has given me such joy over the last few weeks and I managed to produce it for friends in two different countries. Italy and the UK. Feeling very fortunate to share the dish with Friends from Cape Town and Dubai.
A few years ago a chef who was a friend of a friend of ours, came to stay. Naturally, he ended up in the kitchen. Chef produced some very nice recipe’s from many of the hotels and restaurants he has worked. This one, in particular, has become a firm favourite of ours as we love the focus on the freshest of ingredients. I believe the restaurant was at the Brasserie at Old Government House and Spa in St Peters Port on the Channel Island of Guernsey. Fresh fish and great cuisine are in abundance on the picturesque island halfway between England and France.
This is a really uncomplicated dish to make with many variations of ingredients that can be used to create a really delicious meal.
Cooking Around Europe
The first time I made the dish at home and used the ingredients that were in the recipe. We are blessed with the most amazing fishmonger in Arlesford who supplied me with fresh, fresh hake loins. The dish can also be made with Cod or any other firm, meaty fish. Our friend from Dubai loved it and is waiting patiently for the recipe to be published so that she can share with her family and friends.
The next time I made the dish for friends was on a recent trip to Palermo, Sicily. What a wonderful Island to visit. So full of history, including Norman, Greek, Roman, and Arabic. Great food with many origins that have melded together to create a style of cookery that is very unique to the Island. Fusion is not a new idea in Sicily. It has been around for centuries.
The most memorable meal in Italy!
When wandering around the city centre in Palermo we stumbled across the open air market. The fish and vegetables on display at the stalls were amazing. As Samphire wasn’t available I had to think on my feet and chose to use green beans instead. I also added Cannellini Beans and a little avocado to the vegetable mix. My very kind friends said that this was one of their most memorable meals in Italy. How kind of them. (Well, it was in the top three!)
As mentioned its a really easy dish to make and can be served to spoil the family or as a great dish for entertaining friends.
Roasted Hake with Samphire
Chorizo is a fantastic addition to any dinner party recipe thanks to its smoky and spicy taste that really helps to ramp up the flavor of your food. This tasty dish uses cooking chorizo and hake loin fillets, and the two go really well together.
- 200g chorizo, sliced
- 4 Hake loin fillets (around 750g)
- 200g samphire (widely available in supermarkets)
- 150g Snap Peas, Mange Tout, Corgettes or green beans
- 10 Cherry Tomatoes (Halved) (Optional)
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 2tbsp olive oil
Fry the Chorizo in a non-stick pan and when just starting to crisp add your Snap Peas, Cherry Tomatoes, and Samphire. Cook until the Chorizo starts to crisp on the edges. When cooked add your lemon zest and set to one side to allow the flavors to mingle while you prepare your fish.
Depending on the thickness of the hake loin cut into nice size square pieces and Season
Place the Hake skin down onto squares of buttered greaseproof paper squares that are cut to about 1cm larger than the piece of fish. As the Loin is quite thick this will allow the fish to cook through without burning the skin.
Remove your Chorizo mixture from the frying pan and heat till daily hot. The juices left in the pan will give your fish a nice flavor. Pop the fish into the frying pan and cook for 2-3 minutes turning as necessary, until cooked through.
A few minutes before the end of cooking, add the Chorizo and Samphire mixture in with the fish to warm through.
Season well and serve with the Hake with the Chorizo mixture underneath the fish.
These ingredients are approximate as you can increase or decrease as suits your palate and taste. It is also a great dish to fiddle with the ingredients and add or subtract others as you please.
Visiting Sicily was a great experience from a wine point of view. The Etna wines are a little more expensive but really worth spending a little extra. The volcanic soils, altitude and the closeness to the sea really add something special to the taste and fullness of these wonderful cultivars. We drank a Graci Etna Bianco with this dish and it really worked well with both the fish and the Chorizo. Available from Naked Wines.