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12 Mar 2015 Savoury

Polenta Crust Plaice with Watercress Tartare Sauce

The gloriously golden sand that is polenta might not seem like an obvious choice for coating fish and meats but I love how it gives a fine, crisp and well, golden crumb coating. It somehow screams of Easter too so why not give this dish a try for our upcoming Fishy Good Friday?

Serves 4

First prepare the sauce. Remove any really thick stalks from the watercress and place half of the leaves in a mini blender, reserving the rest. Add the mayonnaise and lemon juice and blitz until as smooth as possible. Stir in the gherkins, capers and spring onions. Season to taste and set aside.

Toss the polenta, lemon zest, Parmesan and salt and pepper together in a wide, shallow dish. Beat the eggs in another similar dish. Dip a fish fillet in the egg to coat and then press each side into the polenta mixture, to coat the fish well. Repeat with the remaining pieces.

Heat two large frying pans over a medium heat, dividing the olive oil between them. (Work in two batches if you only have one large pan, keeping the first batch warm in a low oven once cooked). Fry the fillets for 3-4 minutes each side until crisp, golden and cooked through.

Arrange a fish fillet on each serving plate and scatter over the reserved watercress leaves. Serve at once with the tartare sauce and buttered baby new potatoes.

Photo © Carol Dunne

You will need...

150g polenta

finely grated zest of 1 lemon

25g finely grated Parmesan

2 eggs

8 x 125g skinless plaice fillets

2 tbsp olive oil


100g watercress

100g mayonnaise

Juice ½ lemon

50g gherkins, finely chopped

25g capers, rinsed and chopped

3 spring onions, thinly sliced

Buttered baby new potatoes, to serve

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

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