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    Plaice Fillets with Green Lentils, Salad Onions and Oyster Sauce

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    Plaice Fillets with Green Lentils, Salad Onions and Oyster Sauce

    I love the clean briny flavour and the scent of fresh plaice: the oyster sauce accentuates this while the lentils give an earthy backdrop.

    • Preparation time: 20 minutes
    • Cooking time: 25 minutes to 35 minutes
    • Total time: 45 minutes to 55 minutes 55 minutes

    Serves: 4


    • 200g green lentils
    • 1 fresh bouquet garni (thyme, celery, bay leaf and parsley)
    • 3 shallots, peeled and sliced
    • 150ml dry white wine
    • 3 oysters, shucked
    • 100ml double cream
    • 115g unsalted butter, cold, cubed
    • 2 bunches salad onions, trimmed to 10cm lengths
    • 4 plaice fillets (150g each), skins removed
    • 1 tbsp chives, chopped


    1. Rinse the lentils in cold water and put them in a saucepan with the bouquet garni; cover with cold water. Do not season the lentils but bring them to the boil and simmer for 25–35 minutes until tender.
    2. Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4. Place the shallots in a small saucepan with the wine and stew for 10 minutes on a moderate heat until the wine has reduced by half. Add the oysters and their liquor and poach for 2 minutes before removing the oysters from the pan. Pour in the cream. Bring this mixture to the boil and reduce by half. Pour the contents into a blender, along with the reserved oysters. Liquidise the sauce until it is absolutely smooth; gradually add 100g butter and pulse after each addition. If the sauce is not completely smooth, strain it through a fine sieve. Season with pepper and keep warm in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Do not return to direct heat.
    3. Put the salad onions in a saucepan with the remaining butter and 2 tbsp water. Cover with a buttered disc of greaseproof paper and simmer for 5 minutes or until tender. Season the plaice fillets and put them in a buttered oven dish covered with 2–3 tbsp water. Cover with buttered greaseproof paper and bake for 4–5 minutes.
    4. To serve, drain the lentils, remove the bouquet garni, season with salt and pepper and toss with the salad onions. Divide onto plates, arrange the fish fillets alongside, then pour over the sauce. Sprinkle with the chives.

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