Fish Basics Part 1

Cooking fish is an extremely useful skill, but too many people are nervous or squeamish about it. In this, the first of two dedicated tutorials, we demonstrated three easy methods to kick-start your knowledge and confidence, whilst getting you reliably delicious results.

The video itself focuses on technique and the following recipes are designed to help you put those techniques into practice.


What to remember when cooking fish:

– Use plenty of oil when pan-frying, and get the oil really hot.
– Season the skin of the fish generously with salt.
– Fry skin side down first, pressing down with a spatula for the first minute.
– Check after 3 minutes or so, looking for self-release, golden browning and crispy skin.
– Fry the other side and check after a minute or two.

– When steaming a fillet with a thin, tapered tail, you can fold it over for more even cooking.

– Properly cooked fish has flesh whose flakes are defined but not yet separating
– The colour of the flesh should be plain and solid, with no greyness or translucency.
– The flesh should feel firm, but with a slight softness inside.


Pan-Fried Sea Bass with Chorizo Mash and Chive Oil

2 sea bass fillets
500g potatoes
Large knob of butter
50ml of milk
100ml olive oil
Bunch of chives
Packet of cooking chorizo

  1. Blend the chives with the olive oil, reserving a couple of chives for decoration
  2. Cut the chorizo and place on a baking tray and bake in a hot oven for 10-15 minutes
  3. Boil potatoes in salted water until soft
  4. Drain them and mash
  5. Put the pan back on the hob and add butter and milk and season to taste, keep on low heat
  6. Season the skin of the fish and place in a very hot pan, skin side down, until the skin is crispy
  7. Flip over and finish cooking the fish
  8. To check if the fish is cooked, make sure that the fish is not translucent and that the flakes are defined
  9. Stir the chorizo through the mash and place on a warmed plate
  10. Place the fish on top and drizzle with the oil




Steamed Sole

  1. Place a steaming basket over a pan of water with aromatics, such as bay leaf, peppercorns etc.
  2. Once the water boils, turn down to a simmer, place the fish into the top basket (lined with baking paper) and steam for 4-6 minutes until the fish is cooked through



Fish and Vegetables ‘en Papillote’

  1. Use a sheet of baking paper inside a larger sheet of kitchen foil
  2. Slice a selection of vegetables and arrange on the baking sheet
  3. Season with salt, olive oil and a small dash of white wine vinegar
  4. Wrap tightly into a bundle, then bake at 180C for 20 minutes or until cooked through