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Cheddar-crusted Smoked Haddock with Jersey Royals and Creme Fraiche Sauce

The first of the season’s Jersey Royals need absolutely no adornment, but this very quick and easy smoked haddock recipe gives you pools of creamy sauce flavoured with chives, which is perfect to dip them into. Serve the fish on a bed of whole leaf spinach and you have a sublime supper dish.

 Cheddar-crusted Smoked Haddock with Jersey Royals and Creme Fraiche Sauce

  Serves 2

 2 traditionally smoked Icelandic haddock fillets (tail end or middle cut), about 150g each
 2 rounded tablespoons half-fat crème fraîche
 15g pack fresh chives, snipped
 20g butter
 150ml whole milk
 Freshly milled black pepper
For the topping
 1 tablespoon breadcrumbs
 2 rounded tablespoons grated extra mature Cheddar
To serve
 Jersey Royal potatoes
 whole leaf spinach
 Preheat the grill to its highest setting with the shelf about 15cm from the heat.
Oven temperatures and Conversions
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You will need a Delia Online Frying Pan (or similar) with a base measurement of 20cm and oven tray lined with buttered foil.

Recipe adapted from Delia’s Complete How to Cook


First place the fish in the frying pan skin-side down and add a little freshly milled black pepper but no salt. Then pour in the milk (it won’t cover the fish, but that doesn’t matter), bring it up to simmering point and let it simmer gently, uncovered, for 6 minutes for tail-end fillets or 8 minutes for middle cut.

Meanwhile mix the cheddar and breadcrumbs with a little black pepper.

When the fish is ready, using a fish slice carefully transfer it to the lined baking tray, then sprinkle over the cheese and crumb mixture and pop it under the grill for 5–6 minutes until the topping is golden and bubbling.

While that’s happening increase the heat under the pan, and whisk in the crème fraîche. Simmer (uncovered) for about 2 minutes until the sauce reduces and thickens slightly.

Next whisk in the butter and all but one tablespoon of the chives. Taste and season if needed, then carefully remove the haddock onto warm plates and pour the sauce all round.

Sprinkle over the reserved chives.

Delia recommends
To prepare the Jersey Royals, wash but don’t scrape the potatoes. Place them in a traditional or fan steamer set over boiling water, sprinkle with salt and tuck some mint in amongst them. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and steam for about 20 minutes. Test them with a skewer and remember they must be tender but still firm. On other occasions you might want to toss them with a very little butter and some freshly snipped chives or chopped mint or a mixture of both.

Nutrition 592 kcals/43.5g protein/39.8g carbohydrate/6.8g sugars 28.7g fat/17.5g saturated fat/4g fibre/2.6g salt per serving including spinach and potatoes

Photo courtesy of Waitrose


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