This stunning crusted sea bream recipe from Chantelle Nicholson is full of vibrant flavour from a cold tomato 'soup', marinated datterino tomatoes and a baked lemon purée, which helps to secure the smoked almond crumb to the fish.
From New Zealand law student to group operations director and now chef-patron of Tredwells in London, Chantelle Nicholson’s hard work and determination has seen her rise through the ranks of Marcus Wareing’s restaurant empire.
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Begin by making the tomato soup. Slice the tomatoes into 1cm slices and place on a tray in a single layer. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper and freeze for 1 hour
250g of plum tomatoes, overripe
When ready, remove the tomatoes from the freezer, allow to defrost and place in a colander over a bowl to collect the juices
Pour the juice over the bread and leave to sit for 20 minutes to soften. Blend together, add the remaining ingredients and blitz again until very smooth. Pass through a fine strainer, season to taste and store if the fridge until required
1/2 slice of sourdough bread, crusts removed, diced
20g of flaked almonds, toasted
1/8 cucumber, diced
1/2 shallot, sliced
10 basil leaves, torn
1 handful of coriander leaves
20g of tomato purée
125ml of tomato juice
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
10ml of sherry vinegar
20ml of extra virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 160˚C/gas mark 3
To make the baked lemon, place the lemon on a tray and bake in the oven until dark brown. Blitz the whole lemon with the stock syrup and olive oil and season to taste
2 tbsp of stock syrup
2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
Marinate the dattorino tomatoes with the balsamic, olive oil and seasoning
150g of datterino tomatoes, halved lengthways
1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, good-quality
1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
Dress the fennel in the lemon zest, juice and olive oil and set aside
1 fennel bulb, finely sliced
1 tbsp of olive oil
1/4 lemon, juice and zest
Preheat a water bath to 68°C
Sprinkle the bream fillets with salt and set aside for 4 minutes
4 sea bream fillets, pin-boned
Place each fillet into an individual vacuum bag with a tablespoon of oil and seal in a chamber sealer
4 tbsp of olive oil
Cook the fish in the water bath for 4 minutes. Remove the fillets from the bags and place skin-side up under a salamander (or other very hot grill) and cook until the skin is easy to peel off
Dress 4 plates with the soup in swirls, then top with the marinated datterino tomatoes. Place the fish on top and drizzle with the baked lemon purée. Sprinkle with the almonds then top with dressed fennel. Dress the plates with the sorrel leaves and fennel cress before serving
100g of smoked almonds, chopped
red vein sorrel leaves
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