Cod or Sole Meuniére

Meuniere refers to both a sauce and a method of preparation. The word itself means miller's wife and that etymology provides insight into both culinary uses. The miller's wife of course had easy access to flour, and so to cook something a la meuniere was to cook it by first dredging it in flour. But the mill was also located on a stream and thus often had very fresh fish available. Many of the elaborate sauces and preparations that were developed in the 18th and 19th centuries had an underlying purpose of masking food that had begun to spoil during the several days needed for transport from fishing ports. By contrast the fish prepared by the miller's wife did not need to be masked under a heavy sauce. A meuniere sauce is very simple--browned butter, chopped parsley, and lemon.

Category:  Main Course Midweek Express  - 
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Ingredients

For 4 Serving(s)

Recipe

  • 4 fillet portions of cod or your favourite white fish
  • flour seasoned with salt and pepper
  • oil for cooking
  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • 100 g butter
  • fresh chopped parsley.

Cod or Sole Meuniére Directions

  1. 1. Remove any small bones from the fish. Rinse under running water and pat dry with kitchen paper.
  2.  
  3. 2. Coat each fillet with seasoned flour, shaking off any excess.
  4.  
  5. 3. Melt the butter (and oil if using) in a frying pan. When it is hot (but with care, butter burns at a lower temperature than oil), shallow fry the fish for a couple of minutes, depending on thickness, on each side.
  6. 4. Place on warmed plates and pop into a warming oven while you make the butter sauce, the burre noisette.
  7. 5. Wipe the frying pan with kitchen paper. Melt the 100g butter and heat until it changes to a light brown colour.
  8. 6. To serve, squeeze a little lemon juice over each fish fillet, pour the butter sauce over the fish and garnish with the remaining lemon and chopped parsley.
  9. Hint: If you wish you can cook in a mixture of oil and butter. This is slightly easier as the oil helps stabilise the butter.
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