Pollock Grenobloise

Recipe from Kitchen Secrets by Raymond Blanc.

Whilst Cod stocks are replenishing, it is lovely to be able to use an alternative fish like Pollock. This fish is a little underrated, it is a member of the cod family, although not as sumptuous as Cod, it is still a wonderful fish with a great texture and big flavour. This dish is part of the classic French repertoire and cooked in many homes all over France.

Special equipment: Ovenproof frying pan.

 Polock Grenobe

Ingredients Required

4 Pollock fillets (skin on), each 180g and 3cm thick
4 pinches Sea salt
2 Pinches of freshly ground white pepper
40g Unsalted butter
For the pomme purée
1kg Desirée, Belle de Fontenay or Estima potatoes (*1)
170–200ml Whole milk, warmed
70g Unsalted butter, melted
2 pinches Sea salt
2 pinches Freshly, finely ground white pepper
For the sauce
50ml Water
½ Lemon, peeled and segments cut free from the membrane, juice reserved
2 tbsp Capers, washed and drained
30g Shallot, peeled and finely chopped
10g Flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
To finish
30g Small croûtons (*2)

Cooking Method

Planning ahead

The Croûtons can be prepared well in advance and reheated in the oven.

To cook the potatoes for the pomme purée

Peel and quarter the potatoes, cutting them into even-sized pieces. Place in a large saucepan, add enough cold water to cover and bring to the boil over a high heat. Reduce the heat so that the water is gently simmering and cook for 25–30 minutes (*3) until the potatoes are soft.

To finish the purée

Tip the cooked potatoes into a colander to drain and leave for 2–3 minutes to allow excess steam to escape. Pass the potato through a mouli or fine potato masher and return to the saucepan. Using a wooden spoon, gradually mix in 170ml warm milk and then stir in the melted butter and seasoning. Taste and correct the seasoning if necessary. If the purée is too firm, thin it down with a little more milk. You know you have the perfect purée when it is fluffy, forms firm peaks and melts in your mouth. Keep warm over a pan of simmering water.

To cook the fish

Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Pat the pollock fillets dry and  season the flesh side with salt and pepper. In a large ovenproof frying pan over a medium heat, melt the butter and heat until foaming, then add the fish fillets flesh side down and colour for 5–6 minutes (*4). With the aid of a fish slice, carefully turn the fillets onto the skin side and cook for a further 1 minute. Now place the pan in the hot oven for 4–5 minutes. Take out the pan and place back on a high heat for 1 minute. Carefully transfer the fish fillets from the frying pan to a warm serving dish.

To make the sauce

Add the water to the hot pan and stir so that the caramelised juices dissolve and emulsify into the liquid as it boils (*5). Add the lemon segments and juice to the frying pan with the capers, shallot and parsley. Bring back to the boil, taste and correct the seasoning if necessary.

To serve

Spoon the pomme purée onto warmed plates and place the fish on top. Pour the sauce on and around the fish (*6), scatter over the hot croûtons and serve.


Kitchen Secrets

Recipe from Kitchen Secrets by Raymond Blanc, published by Bloomsbury. 

Recipe © Raymond Blanc 2011.

Photograph © Jean Cazals 2011.