Recipe by Andy Harris
A great alternative to Turkey this Christmas – or for any roast meat – this fish recipe is a guaranteed show-stopper
Preheat the oven to 220ºC/450ºF/gas 7. Combine the prawns, tarragon and olive oil in a small bowl and season generously. For the egg wash, whisk the egg and milk in a small bowl and set aside.
Lightly flour a work surface and roll out half of the pastry to a rectangular shape about 5mm thick and 10cm longer than the fish fillets (for the head and tail). Transfer to a lightly oiled baking tin.
Place one of the fillets, skin-side down, on the pastry, leaving a little more space at one end for the tail shape. Spoon the prawn and tarragon mixture over the fish and place the other fillet on top. Brush the edges of the pastry with the egg wash.
Roll out the remaining pastry to the same size and use this to cover the fish, pressing the edges carefully to seal them. Use a small, sharp knife to trim the excess and create your fish shape. Then, with a teaspoon, score half-moon shapes into the pastry in the style of fish scales (but don’t pierce the pastry).
Roll the off-cut pastry to 1cm thick, cut out a few thin strips to shape into fins, and tear off a small piece and roll into a ball for the fish’s eye. Build your fish shape, brush with the remaining egg wash, then bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 220ºC/350ºF/gas 4 and cook for another 20 minutes, until the pastry is golden and the fish is cooked.
Meanwhile, make the salsa verde. Roughly chop the herb leaves in the centre of a large chopping board. Add the garlic, cornichons, capers and anchovies and continue chopping until fine, mixing it together as you go. Transfer to a bowl, stir in the olive oil and vinegar, and season well.
To serve, transfer the fish to a platter and serve in slices with the salsa verde and salad.