Possibly one of the tastiest and best-known white fish is sole. It is one of the flatfishes, as are flounder, plaice, turbot, halibut and “lemon sole”, which is in fact a type of plaice. Whenever you buy fish try to make sure that it originated from a sustainable source (the MSC website has references for every country). Fish stocks have been decimated all over the world and the fish list at http://www.thefishlist.org/ lists the fish you should avoid because there is almost none of it left. Eat for your own health but also the survival of the creatures that share the world with us!
This recipe will never make it into the diet cookbooks – it is rich in dairy products and redolent in calories. But heck, everybody deserves a treat now and again!
Sherried sole gratinee
4 medium soles, skinned and filleted
180 ml (3/4 cup) button mushrooms, sliced fine (fresh, but canned will work in a crisis)
2 small onions, chopped
60 ml (4 T) butter
60 ml (4 T) medium sherry
60 ml (4 T) tomato puree (NB not paste!)
180 ml (3/4 cup) cream
125 ml (1/2 cup) grated cheese
salt & pepper, to taste
Saute onions in butter until soft and yellow. Add sherry and boil rapidly for 3 minutes. Add puree, cream, salt and pepper. Set aside. In a separate pan melt more butter and GENTLY fry the fish fillets for 2 minutes per side. Turn with great care as they break very easily. Carefully remove from pan and lay side by side on a buttered oven dish. Sprinkle mushrooms in thin layer over fish and season lightly with salt and pepper. Spread sherry sauce over everything and top with grated cheese. Bake at 190 degrees C (375 degrees F) for 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.
If you make only two soles, don’t halve the sauce ingredients.