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    Steamed Fillet of Brill with Oysters

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    Steamed Fillet of Brill with Oysters

    Serves: 4


    • 2-5 550g brill
    • 300ml fish stock
    • 50g cold butter
    • 1 shallot, finely chopped
    • 50ml dry white wine
    • 16 oysters, unopened
    • Salt
    • 2 tablespoons double cream
    • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
    • Freshly ground black pepper


    1. You need to fillet the brill into 1 large topside and 1 large underside fillet per fish. Make a cut around the back of the head and across the tail, but not down the centre of the fish. Cut the fish away from the bones so you end up with 2 double fillets from each fish. You could ask a fishmonger to do this.
    2. Put the fish stock into a small pan and boil rapidly to reduce it to about 100ml. Melt a knob of the butter in a medium-sized pan (cut the rest into small pieces and set aside). Add the shallot to the pan and cook for 5 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until reduced to about 2 tablespoons. Add the reduced stock and keep warm.
    3. Open the oysters over a bowl so you collect all the juices. Remove the oysters from their shells and pick out any loose bits of shell. Clean 4 of the shells and set aside.
    4. Season the fish fillets with salt and lay them on a heatproof plate. You can do this in batches. Put a trivet or upturned plate in a large pan and pour in 2.5cm of water. Bring to a vigorous simmer, then put the fish plate on the trivet or upturned plate, cover and steam for 4 minutes.
    5. Add the oyster juice to the sauce with the cream and simmer vigorously for 4 minutes. Then whisk in the rest of the butter, a few pieces at a time, to form an emulsion. Add the oysters and poach very gently for 1 minute. Stir in the chives and season with pepper and a little salt if necessary.
    6. To serve, lift the fish out of the steamer, place skin-side down on 4 warmed plates. Rest an oyster shell alongside each fillet. Put a poached oyster into each shell and position the rest around the fish. Pour the sauce over and serve.

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