Sea Bream with Chorizo Oil and Spiced Aubergine

Jean-Christophe Novelli celebrates sun-kissed cooking with his full-flavoured fish dish, scented with lemon grass
By Jean-Christophe Novelli
Sea Bream with Chorizo Oil and Spiced Aubergine
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

For the red pepper reduction

  • 500 g red peppers, chopped
  • 20 g unrefined caster sugar
  • 1.5 tbsp white wine vinegar

For the aubergine

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 baby banana shallots
  • 50 g aubergines
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cracked white peppercorns
  • 16-20 cherry tomatoes
  • handfuls black olives
  • 1/2 lemon, juice only
  • oil from cooked chorizo, to garnish

For the fish

  • 4 x 175 g sea bream, fillets
  • 4 stalks lemongrass
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 sprigs thyme
  • 125 g chorizo, thinly sliced
  • basil

Method

1. For the red pepper reduction; process the peppers in a liquidizer with 3 ½ tablespoons water. Squeeze the puree through muslin or press through a fine sieve.

2. Tip everything into a pan, stir in the sugar and vinegar, and simmer until the liquid has cooked-down to a syrup.

3. Leave on one side to cool.

4. For the aubergine mixture; preheat the oven to 220C/gas 7. Cut the aubergine into bite-sized chunks and roast in the oven for 20 minutes, until just tender.

5. Peel the shallots and blanch for 5 minutes, until just tender, before draining and halving.

6. Heat a frying pan until hot, add the olive oil and fry the shallots and aubergine for 3-4 minutes; season with salt and cracked white pepper.

7. Stir in the cherry tomatoes and cook for a further 5 minutes. Tip in the
olives and lemon juice and simmer for 2 more minutes. Cover and keep warm.

8. For the fish; spike the sea bream fillets with the lemon grass

9. Heat a large ovenproof pan with the olive oil, bay leaves, thyme and chorizo. Add the fish fillets, skin-side-down, and fry for 2 minutes.

10. Turn the fish over so and transfer the pan to the oven for about 5 minutes, until the skin is golden and flesh just tender. Garnish with basil leaves and accompany with the aubergine mixture; spoon over the red pepper reduction, and finish with a dash of chorizo oil.

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