26/10/2012

Pan Fried Sea Bass with Spinach & Aubergine Pesto and Steamed Vegetables

Simple to put together and bursting with flavour ... it's fish, pesto and vegetables.

First, the fish ...

Scale the fish under running water, gut it, clean out the cavity and then take off the fillets by running a sharp flexible knife down the backbone and progressively slicing the fillet from the ribcage.

Clean up the fillet, pat dry and then no the skin side, pinch the fillet and slash through with a knife - this will prevent the fish from curling up when you dry it. Set aside.

Next, the pesto ...

It's aubergine, spinach and nuts. Peel an aubergine, cube and get it softening in a skillet with some butter. Once softened, place into a receptacle along with a generous handful of spinach, some nuts (pine nuts, in my case), a little white pepper and then blend together with a hand blender.

Ready to cook?

Shred some white cabbage and get it boiling or steaming. Once this is well underway, cut up a courgette into decent sized chunks and get it steaming.

Warm a large skillet up with a little butter, lay the sea bass fillets in skin side down.

Leave it!

Leave the fish where it is for two or three minutes. If the fish will not come away from the pan easily, leave it a little longer. Once cooked on the skin side, flip over and turn off the heat. The fish will now cook in the residual heat.

Ready to eat?

Drain the cabbage and scatter a good helping over the plate.

Sprinkle some mixed seeds over - this works well with cabbage. Some fennel seeds are also nice, perfuming the dish.

Lay your fish over with a quenelle of the pesto over the top and crown with a scattering of courgette.

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