When buying whole plaice, look for bright orange spots and clear eyes, as these are indications of freshness. Plaice is best eaten on the day of purchase but can be kept until the next day, otherwise it will keep in the freezer for a couple of months.
Plaice is very often breadcrumbed and either shallow or deep-fried. Its thin fillets and delicate flesh means quick cooking methods such as frying are perfect. Try cutting into strips before breadcrumbing to make goujons as a tasty snack, or for a healthier option try baking or grilling the fish. Simply season with a little salt and brush with olive oil before placing under a hot grill for few minutes or in a hot oven on a lined baking tray. You could also try cooking a whole plaice for an impressive dinner for two – smother with butter and lemon juice and simply roast in the oven until a knife goes easily through the flesh to the bone.
Place has a mild, sweet flavour that can be easily overpowered so it is best to keep garnishes simple. A fresh green salad would be a light, healthy accompaniment to Galton Blackiston’s easy Plaice with tartare sauce, or try Andrew Mackenzie’s gently steamed plaice lightly flavoured with ginger and soy and served with fragrant herbs. Valentine Warner’s Crispy plaice, pickled cucumber and brown shrimp crispbread makes for an interesting canape or starter, and uses the best of British ingredients.