Flounder may be an unfamiliar fish for many Australians, but chef Geert Elzinga from Essen Restaurant says it's well worth a try. Fish is on the menu at least once a week in the Netherlands.
- 1 large flounder (about 700 g) filleted into 4 pieces lengthways (see Note)
- 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed
- ¼ cup flour seasoned with salt and pepper
- ½ cup fresh breadcrumbs
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp milk
- vegetable oil, to shallow fry
- hollandaise sauce, to serve
- lemon wedges, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
The following recipe has been tested and edited by SBS Food and may differ slightly from the podcast.
Blanch the asparagus in boiling water for 1 minute. Transfer to a bowl of iced water and when cool, drain.
Wrap one piece of flounder around the bottom of 3–4 asparagus stalks and secure by threading a skewer through the flounder, passing through the asparagus stalks and out the other side of the flounder. Repeat with the remaining flounder and asparagus.
Place the flour, combined egg and milk and the breadcrumbs in separate bowls. Dust the bottom of the asparagus and the fish in flour, leaving the tops of the asparagus stalks clean. Next, dip only the floured part of the asparagus and flounder egg mixture. Next roll in the breadcrumbs, pressing lightly to coat.
Place a large saucepan over high heat. Add enough oil to cover the base by 1 cm and when hot add the asparagus and flounder bundles. Tilt the pan so that the asparagus slides down and rests in the pooled oil. Cook for 2 minutes, using a teaspoon to baste the flounder with hot oil. Turn the bundles over and cook for a further 2 minutes, basting with hot oil until the flounder is golden and cooked through.
Remove the skewers and arrange the bundles on a plate. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve with lemon wedges and hollandaise sauce.
• Ask your fish monger to fillet the flounder for you.
Photography by Alan Benson