Haddock in basil oil with green beans and roasted tomatoes

We had some ingredients (particularly basil) to use up so I thought I would have a crack at making a quick and simple dish on my own, based on some other recipes I’d tried previously.

I decided to chop some basil up and add some olive oil, to create a marinade for the fish, and I also used what was left to roast the tomatoes in. basil goes well with tomatoes, and it also went well with the fish, too! The below recipe serves two people.

Ingredients

  • Two boneless, skinless haddock fillets
  • Generous handful of cherry tomatoes
  • Two handfuls of runner beans
  • One large handful of basil (chopped)
  • Two tablespoons of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to season

 

 

Method

  • In a chopper, or by hand, finely chop the basil and place in a bowl with the oil. Reserve a small amount of this to drizzle on your tomatoes.
  • Gently mix the fish fillets in the large bowl of oil, and leave in the fridge for half an hour.
  • When ready to cook, boil the kettle and pre-heat the oven to 180c fan.
  • Put the tomatoes in an oven proof dish, drizzle with basil oil and a sprinkle of salt. These will need 10 minutes in the oven.
  • Put a frying pan on, and add the fish, while bringing a saucepan of the kettle water to boil.
  • When boiling, add some salt and your beans for a few minutes.
  • When the fish has cooked, allow to rest on a warm plate before finishing off the beans in the pan for a few minutes with a sprinkle of sea salt.
  • Plate up with the haddock on top of the beans alongside the tomatoes.
  • Healthy and simple!
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Jamie Oliver’s lemon sole with green beans

The start of the New Year always brings out the best intentions, one of which for most of us it to eat well.

This dish from JO is fresh, healthy and ridiculously easy to make.

You kind find the receipt here, and while mine doesn’t look like Jamie’s, it was a lovely little dish to knock up at home after a day at work.

Joe Wicks’ cod, chorizo and tomato stew with greens

Cod and chorizo are two ingredients that hold themselves well in a stew. Although they won’t disintegrate, you still need to watch you don’ over cook the cod.

I served mine with additional greens and ran some spinach through the stew for some extra thickness and healthy goodness.

This dish would work equally well with whatever white fish you can get your hands on; I’ve used some Pollock that was going cheap, as well as basa which is half the price of cod.

You can get Joe’s great book here.

Cod fillets in parma ham with potatoes and vine tomatoes

Remember when you first start cooking and you heard people talk about seasoning? It’s hard to describe seasoning, isn’t it? You don’t have to cook for very long before seasoning food is a staple along with having chopped tomatoes and an onion in your cupboard, but, you flounder if someone asks you to explain ‘why’.

After a while, it just begins to make sense, you can tell yourself when you’ve properly seasoned a tomato sauce or a piece of griddled chicken.

This dish is also one of those that is made by seasoning correctly. The specks of black pepper, burning their way into the crispy parma ham, the salt glistening on top of the potatoes and providing that contrast to the blistered, sweet, hot tomatoes.

Without careful but generous seasoning, this dish would be relatively boring. But with it, this is a healthy, delicious, easy dinner to knock up in 35 minutes.

Ingredients

  • Two sustainable cod fillets
  • Six slices (at least, eight would be better) parma ham
  • Two decent handfuls of baby potatoes
  • Tomatoes on the vine – as many as you want or can fit in your baking dish with the fish and spuds
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive oil

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 200c
  • Parboil your potatoes in salted water for 5-10 minutes
  • While boiling, season the fish with salt and pepper, then wrap the finish in the parma ham – this can be a bit tricky be gentle with the ham, long stringy bits are hard to wrap a fish in
  • Once wrapped, season again and place in the baking dish
  • Next, put your tomatoes on the vine in the dish.
  • Finally, put the boiled potatoes in the dish.
  • Drizzle everything with olive oil
  • Season generously from a height
  • bang it all in the oven until the fat from the ham has started to drain out and crispen up.
  • Serve up neatly and don’t be afraid to drizzle the fishy, meaty, salty, tomatoey, oily juices from the dish on your plates.

Novice super quick fish curry with spinach

As descriptive terms go, ‘super-quick’ is almost a disservice to this recipe but trust me, you do not miss out on flavour.

I was concerned at first that this might be too watery, or too tomatoey, but actually, if you let the sauce cook down a bit you are left with a tomato based sauce with a real Indian flavour (and heat) coming through at the back.

A good idea is to add some low fat yoghurt and some spinach at the very end as this helps to bulk out and thicken the dish.

This dish is perfect for a midweek after work. OK, so you’re not making the madras paste from scratch (how dare you!) but it’s not bad to come home after a hard days work, and 20 minutes later be sat at the table tucking into a fish curry you’ve knocked up.

This serves two

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Half a large onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Madras curry paste (or more if you like it hot)
  • 225g canned tomatoes
  • Spinach (a couple of go
  • 100ml vegetable stock
  • sustainable white fish fillets, skinned and cut into big chunks
  • rice or naan bread

Method

  • Heat the oil in a deep pan or wok and gently fry the onion and garlic for about 5 mins until soft. Do not burn this, it aint a long recipe, so take the time to gently fry your onion and garlic.
  • When softened, add the curry paste and cook for a couple of minutes, then whack in the tomatoes, before stirring in the stock. Stick to the 100ml if you can, the more you put in, the more has to cook away or it will be too wet. However, you need enough bubbling away to cook the fish in.
  • Bring the sauce to a simmer, then add the fish and wilt the spinach. Stir in all the fish straight away while it’s firmer, but be gentle not to break it all up.
  • Now let it all gently cook for 4-5 mins until the fish flakes easily.
  • When you’re satisfied that the fish is cooked and the sauce is at a suitable consistency, season to taste.
  • Serve immediately with naan bread, and add an extra helping of spinach before drizzling over yoghurt for extra thickness and a cool note to the madras paste.

Novice salmon with lemon and butter

My plating up really is getting better (I think), and since you eat with your eyes, I think that’s a bloody good thing!

This recipe is genuinely one of the simplest I have ever cooked, even easier than the novice chicken sandwiches! This literally takes ten minutes, tastes delicious, fresh and isn’t even that unhealthy! (Unless you are one of those people that gets stressed out by a bit of butter.

I served my salmon with green beans and rice, but you could serve it with whatever you want, obviously, since it’s your bloody house!

This recipe is four two people but really isn’t difficult to extend since it basically boils down to ‘how many fish do I need?’

Ingredients

  • Salmon fillets x2
  • salt and pepper
  • Butter x1 tbsp
  • Juice of half a lemon

Cost

Really, the cost of this is all in the salmon, so it really depends on where you go. There is no reason that this dish need cost more than £10 though, including the rice and veg which are cheap, too.

Method

  • You need to allow 10 minutes for cooking the fish, including a minute or two resting time. I point this out now so that you can prepare the timings, cooking and preparation of your accompaniments in advance.
  • Heat a non-stick frying pan and when at a medium-high add the butter to the pan. When the butter has melted (but don’t let it burn), add the salmon skin side down to the pan. Now season with salt and pepper, and squeeze over the lemon juice. Cook for two to three minutes before turning and cooking for a further two minutes, or until cooked to your taste.
  • Once cooked, leave to rest for a minute on a warm plate before plating up.
  • Enjoy!