Thursday, June 8, 2023

Whole Plaice Stuffed with Salmon Mousse

Dave Winteridge
Dave Winteridge
I am a restaurateur in the South of France but originally from Great Britain. I have spent around 30 years in the hospitality industry and over the past 12 years I have opened restaurants in Spain and France. I am a keen skier, living in the Pyrenees, and ideally for the future I would like to spend less time at the stove and more time at the keyboard.
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With the restaurant closed at the moment due to Covid restrictions I find that I have time to spare.  It’s at these times that chefs can become a little bored which can be great if you live with one because it is a time for experimenting with new and different dishes. 

Whilst shopping the other day I had no idea what to buy for dinner until I saw these lovely fresh plaice on the fish counter.  They are only small plaice, 400 g each, so I bought one for each of us.  Dinner sorted! Nearly.  I also bought a salmon tail and some fresh asparagus on special offer (imported from Peru, but really pretty good) and here’s what we had for dinner. It’s fairly calorific with all the butter but the fish is very healthy! Try serving with à lovely cold, crisp sauvignon blanc and you are in heaven!

Whole Plaice Stuffed with Salmon Mousse

Start by making the salmon mousse.  Remove the skin and any bones from the salmon and chop into smaller pieces.  Put the salmon into a food processor with some fresh dill, salt & pepper and a good measure of cream.  Blitz on high until the salmon reaches a mousse-like texture.  The amount of cream you add will determine how light the mousse is but be careful not to drown it!

To prepare the plaice.  Using some kitchen scissors cut round the edge of the fish removing the “skirt” bones.  With a sharp knife cut down the length of the top of the fish and then by angling the knife run it over the bones to lift the fillet.  Do this on both sides of the back bone on the top of the fish.  Once the fillets have been lifted (but not removed) you can stuff in the salmon mousse.

Whole Plaice Stuffed with Salmon Mousse

They are now ready for the oven.  Grease a flat baking sheet with butter and add a little butter to each plaice. Bake for 12-15 minutes at 200C.

To serve, chop off the head and remove the skin and the line of bones round the edge that have been revealed after the skin is off.

I served them with some Pommes Anna and the asparagus cooked in seasoned butter.  The fish were so fresh plus the butter that is in the Pommes Anna and the asparagus that I did not serve a sauce. There were certainly enough calories on the plate without adding anything like a cream sauce! Pommes Anna are thinly sliced, buttered potatoes pressed together in a ring and cooked in the oven.

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