Blue Mackerel with Romesco Sauce

Blue Mackerel with Romesco Sauce

Spaniards love oily fish, including mackerel, sardines, tuna, bonito and anchovies; and their tangy, slightly spicy Romesco sauce is a great accompaniment to any of these (see video below). I love blue mackerel for their thin plate-sized fillets and gorgeous edible patterned skin. The thin fillets only need a few minutes in a hot pan, any more and they’ll become dry. Cook them skin side down for most of the time, then turn them and cook the flesh side for just a minute or so, they’ll continue to cook in the residual heat so take them out of the pan just before you think they’re ready. Serve with a glass of Oloroso, like Lustau’s Don Nuño, to complete your vicarious trip to Spain. 

Serves 2

Ingredients
  • 300g blue mackerel fillets, skin on, pin-boned
  • 6 thick green onions or baby leeks
  • Extra virgin olive oil, for rubbing and pan-frying
  • Plain flour, for dusting
  • Salt flakes, to taste
  • Romesco Sauce, for serving
  • Crusty bread, for serving
Method
  1. Remove fillets from the fridge 30 minutes or so before cooking, to bring them to room temperature.
  2. Trim the darkest green section off the onions, discard the roots and any wilted outer leaves. Rinse, pat dry and rub well with oil.
  3. Heat a char-grill pan or heavy-based frying pan over medium–high heat.
  4. Grill leeks for 5–10 minutes, turning often, until well charred and tender.
  5. Remove to a plate and set aside to keep warm.
  6. Dust fillets in flour and set aside on a plate.
  7. Heat a heavy-based frying pan over medium heat.
  8. Add a generous amount of oil.
  9. Working in batches if necessary, add the fillets skin side down and cook for 2 minutes or so until well coloured and the top side is starting to turn opaque.
  10. Sprinkle with salt, turn and cook the flesh side for a further minute.
  11. Remove from pan and transfer to a serving platter with the onions and Romesco Sauce.
  12. Sprinkle fish with salt and serve with bread.

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How To Make Romesco Sauce

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