Pan-fried Fillet of Gurnard served with a Lemon Herb Risotto and a Sun-dried Tomato Oil

For a truly splendid fish dish try Michel Lemoine's gurnard recipe, a delicious combination of textures and flavours
By Michel Lemoine
Pan-fried Fillet of Gurnard served with a Lemon  Herb Risotto and a Sun-dried Tomato Oil
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes plus 30 mins soaking
  • Effort: medium



  • 4 medium-sized gurnard fillets, skin on, scaled and pin-boned
  • black pepper
  • dashes of olive oil

For the lemon herb risotto:

  • 150 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 4 medium-sized shallots, finely diced
  • 300 g arborio risotto rice
  • 100 ml white wine
  • 500 ml fresh light fish stock, (more if necessary)
  • grated zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp chopped chervil
  • 1 tsp flat leaf parsley
  • black pepper

For the sun-dried tomato oil:

  • 100 g sun-dried tomatoes
  • 200 ml olive oil

For the garnish:

  • 4 lemon wedges
  • 4 flat leaf parsley
  • rocket salad
  • olive oil, for dressing


1. First make the sun-dried tomato oil, which can be prepared a day in advance if wished. Soak the sun-dried tomatoes in warm water for 30 minutes to soften them; drain. Chop the sun-dried tomatoes thinly and place in a jug blender. Add the olive oil and blend until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.

2. To make the risotto heat the olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the chopped garlic and shallots. Cook gently for 1 minutes.

3. Mix in the Arborio rice and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes until the rice has absorbed the olive oil.

4. Add the white wine and cook, stirring gently, until the wine has reduced.

5. Add about half the fish stock and cook gently, stirring often, until the stock has been absorbed by the rice.

6. Continue adding in the remaining fish stock, a little at a time, making sure that the rice has absorbed all the liquid before adding more in. Once the rice is soft and creamy then remove from direct heat.

7. Mix in the lemon zest, basil, chervil and parsley and season with salt and freshly ground pepper

8. Meanwhile, heat up a non-stick frying pan. Add a dash of olive oil.

9. Cut a criss-cross pattern on the skin side of the fish fillets. Season the fish with salt and freshly ground pepper.

10. Place the fish in the frying pan skin side-down. Fry until the skin becomes crispy, around 3 minutes. Turn over and cook for a further minute.

11. To serve, place a portion of risotto in the centre of four serving plates. Top each risotto portion with a gurnard fillet. Drizzle the sun-dried tomato oil around the rice and over the fish. Place a lemon wedge and a flat-leafed parsley leaf on each fillet. Toss the rocket with a little olive oil and place a small portion on one side of each plate. Serve at once.

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