White fish poached in saffron broth with peas and beans, served with roasted potatoes

Another Salford Kitchen favourite is this poached white fish dish, based on a recipe from Tom Kitchin’s ‘Kitchin Suppers’. The dish is elegant and understated, and the saffron-yellow broth and vibrant vegetables provide a refreshing pop of colour on the plate. Best of all, it is deceptively simple to make and provides a lovely midweek dinner option.

This dish is perfect served with roasted baby (new) potatoes.

Ingredients

Serves 4

For the roast potatoes:

  • 350g baby (new) potatoes, washed and left whole
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

For the fish:

  • 4 fillets of white fish, about 150g each
  • 100ml fish stock
  • Small pinch of saffron strands
  • 30g butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon whipping cream
  • 200g freshly podded peas
  • 200g freshly podded broad beans, skinned
  • 1 teaspoon chopped chives
  • 100g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 100g baby spinach leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Method

For the roast potatoes:

  1. Preheat the oven to 220C / 200C fan / gas 7 / 425F.
  2. While the oven is heating, place the potatoes into a pan of cold water and bring to the boil. Allow the potatoes to cook for 15 minutes and then place a baking tray filled with the oil into the oven.
  3. When the potatoes have cooked for 20 minutes, strain them using a colander and leave them to sit for around 1 minute until relatively dry.
  4. Remove the baking tray from the oven and carefully tip the potatoes into the hot oil. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper and turn to coat them evenly on all sides with a layer of oil.
  5. Place the potatoes in the oven and roast for 25 – 35 minutes, until nicely browned, depending on the strength of your oven. Check on them occasionally while roasting and give them a turn to prevent them from sticking to the pan.

For the fish:

  1. Around 10 – 15 minutes before you want to serve the dish, pour the fish stock into a fairly shallow, heavy-based pan and bring to the boil. Add the saffron strands, lower the heat and simmer gently for 2 – 3 minutes.
  2. Season the fish fillets on both sides with salt and pepper and then carefully lower into the saffron fish stock. Poach very gently for 4 – 5 minutes on one side, then turn the fillets and cook on the other side for 4 -5 minutes; the stock should barely simmer.
  3. To check if the fish is cooked, gently insert a needle or fine skewer into the thickest part of the fillet. If it doesn’t meet any resistance, the fish is cooked.
  4. Once ready, remove the fish from the pan with a fish slice to a warmed plate; keep warm (we normally cover it with foil and place it on the very lowest shelf of the oven, with the heat turned off).
  5. Simmer the poaching liquid until reduced by three-quarters, then whisk in the butter and cream. Add the peas and broad beans and simmer briefly until tender. Add the chives and lastly the tomatoes and baby spinach. Remove from the heat.
  6. To serve, spoon the saffron sauce and vegetables into warmed bowls or deep plates. Place each fillet on top of the vegetables, and serve immediately, accompanied by the roasted potatoes.

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