This Monkfish and Rainbow Chard dinner was pretty fancy but there was no special occasion. It only came about from a particularly fruitful trip to a local farmers market. Even though monkfish has a strong, meaty flavour, it’s not oily so I felt the hollandaise below would work nicely. Which it did. With the richness from the hollandaise, I didn’t want to cook the potatoes in any oil or butter so I just steamed them. I should probably have peeled them for aesthetic but new baby potatoes have such a thin skin it’s completely edible, not to mention good for you.
I think this monkfish dish shows that you don’t need a pile of ingredients or processes on the plate. This one has just four components. But when they are cooked well and good quality they can be such a treat. It might be a little on the expensive side but have chicken for the rest of the week to justify it. Also, as beautiful at this rainbow chard is, it grows as easily as a weed so why not plant some? It’s delicious and good for you not to mention easy on the eye! That might seem unimportant but based on the tiny bit I know about feeding children, it is.
- 500g rainbow chard, chopped and stalks separated from leaves
- 3 cloves of garlic, sliced
- 4-6 baby potatoes
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 25g of butter
- Sea salt flakes
- Half a lemon, juiced
- 2 monkfish fillets
- Some fresh chives to garnish
- 125g butter
- 2 egg yolks
- Half a tsp of white wine vinegar
- 1 pinch of sea salt flakes
- 2 tsp ice-cold water
- A squeeze of lemon juice
- A pinch of cayenne pepper
- Melt the butter and skim off and milk solids that float to the top.
- Whisk together the yolks, vinegar, water and salt until combined.
- Sit the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn't touch the water and whisk the yolks until pale and thick. This should take about 4 minutes over a medium heat.
- Remove the yolks from the heat and whisk in the melted butter slowly.
- Whisk in the lemon juice and cayenne pepper and taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Decant into a bowl or jug and set aside.
- Put the potatoes into steamer and steam over a pot of boiling water for half an hour.
- Heat 2 tbsp of oil and a knob of butter in a pan and add the chopped rainbow chard stalks and garlic and stir-fry for 3 minutes over a medium-high heat.
- Add the chopped leaves, a pinch of salt and the lemon juice. Stir well, clamp the lid on and cook over a medium -high heat for 5 minutes.
- Stir again and decant into a warmed serving bowl.
- Add another 2 tbsp of olive oil to the pan. Once hot, add the monkfish, add a pinch of sea salt flakes and cook over a high heat for 3 minutes.
- Flip them over and let them cook for another 3 minutes. Add a knob of butter towards the end of the 3 minutes and baste the fillets with it.
- Turn the heat down to low and cook for another 5 or 6 minutes turning occasionally.
- Serve up by spooning out the chard, place a monkfish on top, spoon over the hollandaise, sprinkle over the chives and have the potatoes on the side.