Mackerel en croûte with gooseberry chutney

Mackerel en croûte with gooseberry chutney

By
From
Home Comforts
Serves
4
Photographer
Yuki Sigura

This was an idea we had in my restaurant in Malton. These are simple flavours and it is simple to make, too. Even better, these can be assembled in advance for the perfect dinner party dish, sort of a fishy sausage roll! Mackerel, even more than most fish, needs to be spanking fresh.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient

For the chutney

Quantity Ingredient
125g caster sugar
50g sultanas
2 sprigs thyme, leaves
40g piece of root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 shallot, finely chopped
100ml cider vinegar
300g gooseberries, cleaned, topped and tailed
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the mackerel

Quantity Ingredient
250g salmon fillet, skinned, pin-boned and roughly chopped
1 lemon, juiced
110ml double cream
4 mackerel, heads removed, gutted and deboned, tails left on, (ask your fishmonger to do this)
4 sprigs tarragon, leaves
600g all-butter puff pastry, rolled to 5mm thick
2 eggs, lightly beaten
unsalted butter, for the foil

Method

  1. For the chutney, put the sugar into a heavy-based pan and heat, without stirring, until it has melted and turned to a golden-brown caramel, swirling the pan from time to time. Stir in the sultanas, thyme, ginger and shallot.
  2. Add the cider vinegar and gooseberries, return to the heat and bring to the boil, then simmer gently for eight to 10 minutes until the gooseberries are soft, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper and set aside to cool slightly.
  3. To make the mackerel, preheat the oven to 220°C.
  4. Place the salmon fillet into a food processor with the lemon juice and blitz to a fine paste, then gradually add the cream with the processor still running until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Place the mackerel on their sides and open up the cavities, then stuff with the tarragon leaves and the salmon mousse, being careful, so that the fish doesn’t tear.
  6. Cut the pastry into 4 rectangles, each about 18cm x 15cm; the width should be about half the length of the fish, and the length long enough to wrap around the stuffed fish. Brush the pastry with egg, then wrap around the centre of the fish, overlapping the ends underneath.
  7. Place on to a baking tray in a row, then mark the pastry with the end of an apple corer or similar to replicate fish scales and brush with egg. Wrap the tails in buttered foil to stop them from burning.
  8. Sprinkle with some sea salt, then bake in the hot oven for 20 minutes until golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and rest for five minutes.
  9. Remove the foil from the tails, cut the fish in half and place the tail end upright on to serving plates, with the other half lying alongside. Finish with a dollop of gooseberry chutney.

Note

  • Get the fishmonger to remove the bones from t he mackerel, but try to keep the fillets together or it may fall apart (that’s why I leave the tail on).
Tags:
James Martin
Saturday Kitchen
comfort food
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