Summer on a plate: Hake with olives, olive oil and garden vegetables

Kitchen Cabinet: Richard Milnes’s recipe takes advantage of the season’s best produce

Hake with garden bounty, black olives and olive oil, by Richard Milnes

Hake with garden bounty, black olives and olive oil, by Richard Milnes

 

For me, this is what summer is all about. I’m lucky enough to live by the sea and to have space to grow a lot of beautiful produce. At this time of year, it is heaving with beautiful vegetables, flowers and berries.

This dish allows the flavours of both the fish and garnish to really come to life. It is simplicity itself and summer on a plate.

Richard Milnes is head chef and owner at Dillon’s in Timoleague.

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HAKE WITH GARDEN BOUNTY, OLIVES & OLIVE OIL

Serves two
Ingredients
300g hake fillet, skin on, scales off
50g broad beans
50g runner beans
50g agretti (optional)
50g courgette
50g yellow beans
15g mixed soft herbs
50g cherry tomatoes
25g kalamata olives
4 gooseberries
30ml olive oil, and extra for frying the fish
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp butter

Method
1
Portion the hake, season it lightly with salt and pepper and allow to come up to room temperature.
2 Prepare your vegetables by cutting them all into even sizes; I usually use the size of a medium broad bean as my guide. The agretti, if using, can be picked into small fronds ensuring that the stem isn’t tough and fibrous. Place the veg in a saucepan and add 1 teaspoon of salt and pour over a litre of boiling water. Stir gently and allow to sit for one minute. Drain, cool with cold water and keep to one side.
3 Warm the olive oil gently in a small saucepan, ensuring it doesn’t get too hot (40-50 degrees Celsius is good). Tear the soft herbs into the olive oil and add the gooseberries, tomatoes, olives and balsamic. Season lightly with salt and pepper and keep this warm.
4 Heat a heavy-based frying pan and add a small bit of olive oil; you want this to smoke lightly but not too much. Place the fish in, skin-side down, and allow this to brown gently. When the fish is cooked about a third of the way through, add a teaspoon of butter. Allow this to brown but not burn, about 20-30 seconds, then add a teaspoon of lemon juice and flip the fish over.
5 Add the blanched vegetables to the pan and remove from the heat, stirring occasionally to coat the veg in the buttery fish juices. Leave for two minutes, depending on the thickness of your fish – possibly more.
6 Spoon out the vegetables into two bowls and divide the tomato, herb and olive oil mix over those and put the fish on top, so as to keep a nice crunch on the skin. I garnish with runner bean flowers, borage and coriander flowers for a bit of extra freshness.

Kitchen Cabinet is a series of recipes from chefs who are members of Euro-Toques Ireland, who have come together during the coronavirus outbreak to share some of the easy, tasty things that they like to cook and eat at home #ChefsAtHome

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