Confit mackerel fillet with Serrano ham and gazpacho jelly
- June 2007
- Serves 4 as a starter
- Hands-on time about 1 hour, oven time 50 min, plus cooling and chilling
A simple restaurant-style fresh mackerel, Serrano ham and gazpacho jelly recipe that makes an impressive starter.
- 50.1g (10.2g saturated)
- 17.1g (9.3g sugars)
- 300ml olive oil, for frying
- 2 thin slices white bread, crusts removed
- 50g whole blanched almonds
- 100ml single cream
- 4 x 75-100g fresh mackerel fillets, pin-boned
- 4 thin slices Serrano ham
- Mixed salad leaves
For the gazpacho jelly
- 3 red peppers
- 65ml olive oil
- 1 small garlic clove
- 1 ripe plum tomato
- 3 gelatine leaves
- Make the jelly. Preheat the oven to 150°C/fan130°C/gas 2. Put the peppers in a roasting tin, toss with 1 tbsp oil and some seasoning and roast for 50 min, turning halfway, or until soft. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then peel and deseed and put in a liquidiser or food processor. Add the garlic and tomato and whizz for 2 min. Add the remaining oil and whizz again. Pass through a fine sieve into a saucepan, season to taste and heat through over a medium heat, stirring, until hot but not simmering.
- Soak the gelatine in a little water for 5 min to soften. Squeeze out the excess liquid and dissolve in the hot gazpacho. Pour into 4 x 100ml moulds. Cool, cover and chill for at least 4 hours or until set.
- Meanwhile, make the croutons. Heat the oil in a wide, deep frying pan over a medium heat. Roll the bread out as thinly as possible with a rolling pin, then cut each slice in half diagonally to make 4 triangles. When the oil is hot, add the bread and cook for a few minutes, until golden and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Set aside, reserving the oil.
- Make the almond purée. Preheat the grill to medium. Lay the almonds on a baking tray and pop under the grill for a few minutes, shaking occasionally, until lightly toasted – be careful they don’t burn. Roughly chop and set 1 tbsp aside. Put the remainder in a pan with the cream and 100ml water, and set aside to infuse for 20 min.
- Meanwhile, confit the mackerel. Reheat the set-aside pan of oil to 65°C or until warm, not hot. Pat the mackerel dry, lower into the oil then set the pan aside for 5 min. Remove the fish with a slotted spoon. Drain on kitchen paper.
- To finish the almond purée, place the infused cream over a high heat and bring to the boil. Set aside to cool slightly, then blitz to a smooth, fairly thick purée. Season.
- Spoon the almond purée onto the side of 4 starter plates. Top with a mackerel fillet and sprinkle with the chopped almonds. Dip each jelly mould briefly in hot water, upturn and rest a crouton against it. Ruffle a slice of Serrano ham alongside and garnish with mixed salad leaves to serve.
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