Pan roasted trance of Turbot in beef dripping with Jersey Royals, crushed cucumber and dill, cucumber beurre blanc

Tom Kemble

Tom Kemble

4th February 2016
Tom Kemble

Pan roasted trance of Turbot in beef dripping with Jersey Royals, crushed cucumber and dill, cucumber beurre blanc

Turbot is a large, saltwater flatfish known for its firm, white flesh and delicate flavour, dry-heat methods of cooking such as baking, roasting, grilling and pan-frying are recommended for a flavoursome finish – Take a look at the following Pan roasted trance of Turbot in beef dripping with Jersey Royals, crushed cucumber and dill, cucumber beurre blanc recipe as tried and tested by our professional chefs.


  • 1 2-3kg turbot divided into tranches on the bone
  • 8 English cucumbers
  • 1kg Jersey Royal potatoes
  • 500g unsalted butter
  • 100ml Chardonnay vinegar
  • A bunch of dill
  • 2 tbs beef dripping
  • Sprig of rosemary and thyme
  • 2 cloves of garlic, skin on and crushed
  • 1 small pot of whipping cream


Crushed Cucumber

This can be done in advance and kept in the fridge for a few hours.

Peel six of the cucumbers, halve them and scrape the seeds out using a spoon. Reserve the skins for the beurre blanc. Grate cucumber thickly and salt lightly. Leave to stand in a colander for one hour. Using a clean cloth or muslin squeeze the mixture, releasing the juice. To serve, mix the cucumber with some chopped dill and check the seasoning. Adjust if necessary.

Jersey Royals

Scrub the Jersey Royals with a clean green pan scourer. Cover them with cold water and add a pinch of salt. Bring up to a simmer and cook until tender – about 10-15 minutes, while you are cooking the fish and beurre blanc. Drain from the cooking water and add a generous lump of salted butter.


In a non-stick frying pan, heat the beef dripping until almost smoking. Carefully place the tranches of fish, about four at a time, into the hot dripping on their white side, and turn the heat down. The skin should caramelise nicely and not burn. Turn the fish over after xx minutes and repeat on the dark side for a few minutes. Then add a few knobs of butter. This should start to foam if there is enough heat in the pan. Add a crushed garlic clove and the sprigs of rosemary and thyme. Baste the fish with a large spoon, carefully moving the foaming butter over the fish. Remove the turbot from the pan using a slotted spoon and rest on a wire rack covered loosely with tin foil. The best way to test if the fish is cooked is to use a small skewer and pierce the turbot near the bone. Remove the skewer and place on your lip. It should feel warm to touch and the meat should just be coming off the bone. If it needs more time return the fish to the frying pan and baste again. Rest for a few minutes, during which you can gather the rest of your garnish.

Cucumber beurre blanc

The joy of this sauce is the balance between fat from the butter, acidity from the vinegar and iodine flavours from the cucumber. I use chardonnay vinegar, which is aromatic and slightly sweet. Make it just before you serve the fish.

Peel the remaining two cucumbers and reserve the skin. Using a spoon scrape out the seeds and slice the cucumber finely. Heat a saucepan gently and add the cucumber. Cook for a few minutes and then add 1-2 tbs of the vinegar. Reduce the vinegar and cucumber for a few minutes and then add 2 tbs of cream. This will make the sauce more stable. Bring this up to a simmer and then on a low heat slowly whisk in the chilled butter, piece by piece. When you have whisked in half the remaining butter, add the cucumber skins by blitzing in with a hand blender. Pass this mixture through a sieve and return to a clean saucepan on a low heat. Add the rest of the butter slowly. Season with salt and check acidity. Add a splash more vinegar if required.

When everything is ready, season the fish with some decent sea salt and serve with the warm Jersey Royals, crushed cucumber and a liberal dressing of beurre blanc.

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