Friday, 6 July 2012

Black Bream with Basil and Peas ‘Bonne Femme’

This fish dish is great, Sea Bream can be quite expensive but if you buy it from a fishmongers and not a supermarket you would get a much better deal. Great for a Friday night dinner and the peas that accompany it are so good! This recipe serves 6

6 Black Bream Fillets, Skin On, About 175g Each
Small Handful Of Basil Leaves

Peas 'bonne femme':
250g Unsmoked Bacon Lardons
Olive Oil, For Cooking
Few Sprigs Of Thyme
150g Pearl Onions
Sea Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
600g Fresh Or Frozen Peas


  1. Remove any small bones from the fish fillets with tweezers. Score the skin of the bream fillets at 1cm intervals.
  2. Season with salt and pepper and place a few basil leaves on the flesh side.
  3. Place each fish fillet on a large piece of cling film and drizzle with olive oil.
  4. Wrap up to enclose the fillets in the cling film, twisting the ends to seal.
  5. For the peas bonne femme, fry the lardons with a little olive oil for 8-10 minutes until golden brown and crisp.
  6. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Add the onions and thyme to the pan and cook for 10 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender.
  7. In the meantime, bring a large pan of water to the boil, then reduce the heat to a low simmer.
  8. Add the wrapped bream fillets and gently poach for about 10 minutes until the fish is opaque and cooked through. If the centre is not cooked through, poach for a further 2-3 minutes.
  9. Add the peas and crispy bacon to the onions and cook for 2-3 minutes until the peas are tender. Season well.
  10. Divide the peas. Unwrap the bream fillets and place on top of the vegetables, skin side up. Drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.

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