Fish with fennel in Riesling (by Simon Thomsen)
Simon Thomsen is a restaurant critic for the Daily Telegraph in Sydney, Australia. He has written award-winning stories on food and travel for numerous publications, including The Weekend Australian Magazine and Travel & Leisure Australia. In a past life, Simon wondered the world, working as a chef and waiter before deiciding he wields a pen better than a knife.
4x180g fish fillets (I prefer white fish, such as snapper, barramundi, or for a real treat, coral trout or murray cod, but you can use ocean trout or Atlantic salmon)
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 leek, sliced into 1cm-thick rings
1 small fennel bulb, finely sliced
1 cup shelled, fresh peas (frozen is fine too)
1 tbsp chopped mint
300ml Best's Great Western Riesling
50ml lemon juice
1/2 lime, juiced
1 tbsp chopped chives
150ml extra virgin olive oil
Salt, for seasoning
Preheat oven to 180C
Add half the olive oil to a frying pan on medium heat and sauté the onion and leek for five minutes, then add the fennel and cook for another five minutes. Add 100ml of Riesling to the pan and toss in the peas too, cook for another three minutes to reduce the wine. Remove from heat, season, add the squeeze of lemon juice and mint and cover to keep warm.
Lightly coat fish fillet in rice flour, removing any excess. Heat the remaining oil to medium in an oven-proof fry pan, then add the fish, increase the heat slightly and cook for two minutes each side. Add the remaining Riesling and lemon juice, melt the butter and brush it over the fish, then lightly season it. Put in the oven for three minutes, or a little longer if the fillets are thicker than snapper, until the fish begins to flake.
Divide the fennel mix between four plates, place the fish on top, toss the parsley and chives into the pan with the sauce, then pour it over the rop.
Serve with a glass of Riesling of course!