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    Dover sole with caper, garlic and parsley butter

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    Dover sole with caper, garlic and parsley butter

    This is an easy but impressive dish. Dover sole is delicate – both in taste and texture – but cooking it whole keeps it tender and allows the flavour to shine. 

    • Preparation time: 20 minutes
    • Cooking time: 20 minutes
    • Total time: 40 minutes

    Serves: 2


    50g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
    2 whole fresh Dover soles * (about 450g each)
    25g plain flour
    2 tbsp sunflower oil
    2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
    2 tbsp lemon juice
    1 tbsp nonpareille capers, drained and rinsed
    ½ x 25g pack flat leaf parsley, leaves picked and finely chopped
    steamed new potatoes and wilted spinach, to serve (optional)

    * (Available from the fish service counter) 


    1. Preheat the oven to 200˚C, gas mark 6. Lightly butter a non-stick baking tray. Scale the fish, if needed. Put the flour in a large, shallow bowl and season. Pat the fish dry with kitchen paper. Toss 1 fish in the flour, coating well, then shake off any excess.

    2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a high heat. When it starts to bubble, put the coated fish in the pan, dark-skin-side down and cook, without moving, for 2 minutes, until nicely browned underneath. Carefully turn the fish over and cook for 2 minutes, turning the heat down a little if it gets too hot, then transfer to the prepared baking tray, dark-side up. Toss the second fish in the flour, then repeat the frying process. Put the baking tray in the oven and cook for 7-8 minutes.

    3. Wipe out the pan with kitchen paper, then add the butter and return to the heat. Cook until the butter melts and begins to turn light brown, then mix in the garlic, lemon juice and capers. Swirl in the pan for a few seconds, then take off the heat and stir through the parsley. Season if needed.

    4. Take the fish out of the oven and check it’s cooked through (the flesh close to the head should lift away easily from the bones). Lift the fish onto warm plates and spoon over the buttery sauce. Serve straight away, with steamed new potatoes and wilted spinach, if liked.

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    This recipe first appeared in Waitrose & Partners Food, March 2020 issue. Download the Waitrose & Partners Food app for the full issue


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