J Sheekey has been offering the finest fish, oysters and shellfish since the 1890s. Try their delicious recipe for seasonal brill.
Among the family of flatfish, brill comes close to turbot for flavour and texture.
Revered in France as le mousserron vrai, “the true mousseron”, the season for St George’s mushrooms Calocybe gambosa, traditionally starts on April 23, St George’s Day, though there are more likely to be found through May. Loved by our chefs for their firm texture and creamy, woody flavour, they often grow in abundant (fairy) rings in pasture, verges and woodland edges. Warning: as with all wild mushrooms, please be extremely careful as St George’s are easily confused with poisonous varieties. Safer to order, as we do, from a specialist supplier.
Wild garlic is readily available in the UK from March until the end of May.
1 large brill, cut into 4 (on the bone)
150g St George’s mushrooms, or other seasonal wild mushroom
1 small shallot, finely chopped
Sunflower oil for frying
60g unsalted butter
Juice of ½ lemon
½ small bunch chives, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the wild garlic mash
A good handful of wild garlic, chopped
30g unsalted butter
50ml double cream
500g King Edward potatoes
Salt and ground white pepper
To make the mash, boil the potatoes in a saucepan of salted water for 20 minutes or until soft, and drain well. Mash in the pan until smooth or through a ricer (do not use a blender!). Return to the heat, add milk and stir. Fold in butter then cream. Finish with wild garlic, stir well, and season. Keep warm.
Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Season the brill and cook for 5 minutes. Turn over for a further 5 minutes. Remove and keep warm. Wipe the pan with kitchen roll, heat oil, add the shallot and cook for 2 minutes without colour. Add St George’s mushrooms, turn up the heat and cook for 4 to 5 minutes until soft. Add butter, lemon juice and chopped chives. Season.
To serve, spoon wild garlic mash onto each plate. Place the brill on top and scatter with St George’s mushrooms.
For more information about J Sheekey’s visit www.j-sheekey.co.uk