We're actually enjoying something that approximates summer here in the UK. Incredible, I know; I'll give you a few moments to pick yourself up off of the floor. Better? As a consequence of this sunshine, I am wanting to prepare lightly cooked meals and enjoy them with a glass of chilled white wine. Nothing too fancy and with minimal time spent at the hob. Last night's offering was just about perfect.

This is a fairly classic way of serving fillets of white fish, and really you can use anything that takes your fancy. Last night I cooked halibut, but a flat fish, such as plaice, works equally well. Ideally you want a citrussy wine to complement the fish and the other sauce ingredients, so look for a Sauvignon Blanc or Semillon. New potatoes and salad or some steamed vegetables are perfect accompaniments. Then all you need to do is enjoy.

Ingrediments to serve four

  • 4 fillets of white fish
  • Seasoned plain flour for dusting
  • Butter and oil for frying

  • 125ml (4floz) white wine
  • 125ml (4floz) double cream
  • 1tbsp capers
  • Squeeze of lemon juice


Wash your fillets of fish, pat them dry, and check them over for any lingering pin bones.

In a large frying pan heat a mixture of butter and oil over a medium flame so that it covers the base of the pan and the butter begins to bubble.

Whilst the fat is reaching temperature, dust the fish fillets with seasoned flour.

Carefully place the fish fillets in the pan, skin-side up, and leave them to seal in the hot fat for two or three minutes, depending on thickness. Turn them and allow to cook for a minute or two more before removing to a plate. The fish should be just cooked.

Reduce the flame beneath the pan and deglaze it with the wine. Pour in the cream, add a squeeze of lemon juice and the capers, and stir. Allow the sauce to bubble gently and thicken for a few minutes before returning the fish to the pan so that it can heat through.

Serve and enjoy. And don't forget to finish the wine with the meal.

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