Roasted trancons of turbot with a sauce vierge


by: Sara Joe

The flatfish are an order (Pleuronectiformes) of ray-finned fish, also called the Heterosomata, sometimes classified as a suborder of Perciformes. A great way to prepare any whole flatfish that will fit in your skillet. The best way to eat it is to simply pick at the fish with a pair of chopsticks or your fingers. Turbot is rarely available in the United States, but another flatfish such as a fluke or flounder makes a good substitute.


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serves: 4

1/3 cup (85 ml) extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for brushing)

1 teaspoon chopped rosemary

1 teaspoon chopped thyme

1 leaf bay (minced)

1/2 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds

1 teaspoon coarsely crushed black peppercorns

Maldon sea salt flakes

4 (6-8 oz/175-225 g) troncons of turbot


1/3 cup (85 ml) extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 plum tomato (seeded and cut into small dice)

8 black olives (pitted and cut into fine strips)

2 small anchovy fillets in oil (drained and diced)

1 clove garlic (minced)

1 teaspoon heaped coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Salt and coarsely ground black pepper

Nutrition Facts
Roasted trancons of turbot with a sauce vierge

Servings Per Recipe: 4

Amount per Serving

Calories: 373

  • Total Fat: 39.7 g
  •     Saturated Fat: 5.5 g
  •     Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 4.8 mg
  • Sodium: 334.7 mg
  • Total Carbs: 4.4 g
  •     Dietary Fiber: 1.4 g
  •     Sugars: 1 g
  • Protein: 2.2 g

how is this calculated?

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1.  Cut away the frills of the fish with scissors, then cut close around the back of the head, down to the backbone, so that you retain as much of the fillet as you can. Cut through the backbone using a cleaver and mallet, then cut away the head.

2.  Cut through the flesh along the backbone of the fish, down to the bone, with a sharp knife. Cut through the bone with the cleaver and mallet, then finish cutting the fish in half with the knife.

3.  Cut each half into portion-sized troncons, cutting through the backbone when necessary with the cleaver and mallet.

4.  Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C). Mix together the olive oil, chopped herbs, fennel seeds, crushed peppercorns, and 1 teaspoon of sea salt in a small roasting pan. Add the pieces of turbot and turn them over in the mixture so that they are well coated.

5.  For the sauce, put everything except the chopped parsley and seasoning into a small pan, ready to warm through just before serving.

6.  Heat a heavy-based frying pan that can be transferred to the oven over a high heat until smoking-hot. Add the troncons of turbot, dark-side down, to the pan and sear for about 1 minute until the skin has taken on a good color. Turn them over and transfer the pan to the oven. Roast for 8 to 10 minutes. Just as the fish is ready, place the sauce over a very low heat to warm through.

7.  To serve, lift the pieces of fish onto the center of four warmed plates. Stir the parsley and seasoning into the sauce, then spoon it around the fish. Brush the top of each piece of fish with a little more oil and sprinkle with a few sea salt flakes.

Cooks' note:
Thick fillets of brill, john dory, or sea bass, or fillets of flaky fish such as
cod, haddock, or hake.

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