Glazed Turbot fillet with jerusalem artichokes purée and crunchy grapes
After the dark chestnut soup, the first thing you will notice about this dish is its pristine, almost monastic white looks. Don’t be fooled though, the glazed and cured fish has sophisticated salty, citric and sweet notes, which the luxurious purée gently softens. The pretty grapes are as much an eye pleaser as a refreshing sweet and juicy complement, making this dish the ultimate refinement.

Glazed Turbot fillet with jerusalem artichokes purée and crunchy grapes

Posted on November 12, 2009
Categories: All Recipes
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Recipe by: Pascal Aussignac, Cuisinier Gascon (2009)
Busy:30 min, Total prep time: 40 min
Serves: 4 
Can be prepared a day ahead:

Trim the fillets to neaten, sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the salt and set aside in the fridge for 2 hours. When ready, wash off the salt off the fillets under running water and pat dry. If not using the fish right away, store covered on a plate and place back in the fridge.

Meanwhile, make the verjuice sauce. Boil the lemon juice with the maple syrup for a minute then add the verjuice (or wine plus vinegar mixture) and simmer for about 15 minutes, until reduced by half. Strain through a fine sieve into a small bowl and set aside. If using wine, there is no need to strain.

Make the artichoke purée. Cut the peeled artichokes into even-sized chunks and boil in lightly salted water with the lemon juice for 10–15 minutes until tender. Drain and return the artichokes to the pan with the cream, ground almonds, olive oil and some seasoning. Bring to the boil, simmer for 5 minutes, then whizz to a smooth purée with a mixer. Season with pepper and go light on the salt. The fish, which has been cured, will feel quite salty.

Prepare the crunchy grapes. Roughly crush or chop the sunflower seeds and pine nuts. Mix with the chopped fresh dill.

Sprinkle the base of a medium non-stick frying with the caster sugar and heat on the hob on medium-low, without stirring, until it starts to dissolve, but not caramelise.

Then stir in the green grapes until coated and mix in the seeds, nuts and dill.

Remove and tip out onto some non-stick baking paper. Cool until crunchy and store in the fridge if not using within the hour.

Just before serving:

If you made the grapes a day before, take them out of the fridge so they can warm up to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/Gas 4.

Remove the turbot fillets from the fridge, Rub them with olive oil and place in a lightly oiled roasting pan, skin-side down. Pour over the verjuice/wine sauce.

Bake for about 10 minutes in total, basting the fish once or twice with the sauce until nicely glazed. The fish is ready when the flesh feels firm when pressed.

Reheat the artichoke purée and divide between four warm plates.

Take the fillets out of the dish, remove their skin (it should peel off really easily) and divide them in two lengthways. Top the purée with the fillets and surround with the crunchy grapes.

Drizzle the remaining sauce around and the pomegranate seeds if using.

Can be prepared a day ahead:

Trim the fillets to neaten, sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the salt and set aside in the fridge for 2 hours. When ready, wash off the salt off the fillets under running water and pat dry. If not using the fish right away, store covered on a plate and place back in the fridge.

Meanwhile, make the verjuice sauce. Boil the lemon juice with the maple syrup for a minute then add the verjuice (or wine plus vinegar mixture) and simmer for about 15 minutes, until reduced by half. Strain through a fine sieve into a small bowl and set aside. If using wine, there is no need to strain.

Make the artichoke purée. Cut the peeled artichokes into even-sized chunks and boil in lightly salted water with the lemon juice for 10–15 minutes until tender. Drain and return the artichokes to the pan with the cream, ground almonds, olive oil and some seasoning. Bring to the boil, simmer for 5 minutes, then whizz to a smooth purée with a mixer. Season with pepper and go light on the salt. The fish, which has been cured, will feel quite salty.

Prepare the crunchy grapes. Roughly crush or chop the sunflower seeds and pine nuts. Mix with the chopped fresh dill.

Sprinkle the base of a medium non-stick frying with the caster sugar and heat on the hob on medium-low, without stirring, until it starts to dissolve, but not caramelise.

Then stir in the green grapes until coated and mix in the seeds, nuts and dill.

Remove and tip out onto some non-stick baking paper. Cool until crunchy and store in the fridge if not using within the hour.

Just before serving:

If you made the grapes a day before, take them out of the fridge so they can warm up to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/Gas 4.

Remove the turbot fillets from the fridge, Rub them with olive oil and place in a lightly oiled roasting pan, skin-side down. Pour over the verjuice/wine sauce.

Bake for about 10 minutes in total, basting the fish once or twice with the sauce until nicely glazed. The fish is ready when the flesh feels firm when pressed.

Reheat the artichoke purée and divide between four warm plates.

Take the fillets out of the dish, remove their skin (it should peel off really easily) and divide them in two lengthways. Top the purée with the fillets and surround with the crunchy grapes.

Drizzle the remaining sauce around and the pomegranate seeds if using.

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Verjuice is a slightly sweet, mostly sour and tart unripe green grape juice that has been in use since times that predate Christ. It went back in favour in British cooking a few years ago but it now seems out of fashion again. I could not find it anywhere, despite trying multiple gourmet shops in my area. If you are as unlucky as me, substitute it with chardonnay and a bit of cider vinegar.
The original recipe also calls for river fish Zander, but this variety is quite hard to find with British fishmongers. I substituted it with Turbot, a very fine fish with a delicate and creamy flesh that worked beautifully.
Ingredients

Fish
600g turbot fillets (you can get that from 2 medium turbots)
sea salt and freshly ground
black pepper
olive oil
some fresh pomegranate seeds, to garnish (optional)

Verjuice sauce:
juice of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons maple syrup
200 ml verjuice or 160 ml fruity white wine (chardonnay) and 40 ml cider vinegar

Artichoke purée
250g Jerusalem artichokes, thinly peeled
a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice
200ml double cream
2 tablespoons ground almonds
1 tablespoon olive oil

Crunchy grapes
100 g seedless green grapes
2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1 teaspoon dill
2 tablespoons caster sugar

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