Poached monkfish with red pepper sauce

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December 11, 2015 by dgarnett2013

Poached monkfish with red pepper sauce: Rory O’Connell (Masterclass)



A great way of cooking monkfish and can be multiplied easily. Sauce can be prepared in advance and stored in a warm place. You can also substitute red peppers for chopped chives, watercress, herbs, lightly cooked spinach, sorrel.

Serves 6 as a main course

  • 675g monkfish, carefully trimmed of skin AND MEMBRANE (this is crucial, as it means the monkfish will never be tough)
  • 2 pints water
  • 1 tsp salt



  • 1 red pepper. Green works. Yellow doesn’t.
  • 140g butter
  • 250ml cream
  • sprigs of flat parsley or chervil to garnish


Cut the monkfish tails into 1cm collops (chunks) and refrigerate until needed.

Deseed the red pepper and dice the flesh into 3mm cubes. Sweat gently in 1 tsp of butter in a covered pot (with butter paper) until barely soft. It’s really easy to burn this so turn off the heat after a few minutes and it will continue to cook in the pot.

Put the cream into a saucepan and bring to the boil, then simmer until it reduces and the colour goes butter and the cream thickens. (Cream, like butter, get thicker, more yellow and nuttier as it heats and reduces. This makes it interesting). Stir occasionally as the cream will stick (as it should). Whisk in the butter bit by bit as though you were making a Hollandaise sauce.

Finally, stir in the diced red pepper. Thin the sauce with a very little warm poaching liquid if necessary and keep warm. (It is quite good natured as it doesn’t contain eggs).

Bring the water to the boil and add the salt.

Add the collops of monkfish and simmer for 4 – 5 mins or until completely white and no longer opaque. Drain well.

Arrange in a warm serving dish or on individual plates.

Coat each piece of fish with the red pepper sauce and garnish with sprigs of flat parsley or chervil.

Serve immediately.

Eaten the day of Rose’s Nativity play. She played a shepherd.

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