Recipe Hake fillet with cavolo nero and sabayon sauce

Morning Glory

Obsessive cook
Staff member
19 Apr 2015
Local time
11:10 AM
Maidstone, Kent, UK
'Deep, dark and difficult' is how I think of cavolo nero (Tuscan kale). Perhaps surprisingly, it works really well with fish. The robust earthy bitterness of the kale contrasts with the delicate sweet flesh of the fish. Here, a sharp frothy sabayon brings the two together.


Ingredients (serves 2)
For the cavalo nero:

150g cavalo nero
40g butter
1 tbsp grated garlic
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
200ml water
A few grates of nutmeg
Salt to taste
Aleppo chilli flakes to sprinkle

For the fish:
2 fillets of hake
40g butter

For the sabayon:
50ml chicken stock
30ml medium dry sherry
2 tsp lemon juice
2 egg yolks

For the cavolo nero:
  1. Remove the central stalks from the kale leaves. Chop the leaves.
  2. Melt the butter in a large pan and add the garlic and ginger. Fry gently for a few minutes then add the water and kale.
  3. Simmer until the kale is cooked to your liking and the water has evaporated. Add more water whist cooking if required. Add the nutmeg and season with salt to taste. Set aside and keep warm whilst you cook the fish.
For the hake:
  1. Melt the butter in a heavy pan until it foams
  2. Add the hake fillets, skin side down and cook on a medium low heat, basting frequently with the butter until the fillets are opaque (approx. 5 minutes). Set aside to rest while you make the sabayon.
For the sabayon:
  1. Add the stock, sherry and lemon juice to a small saucepan, bring to a simmer and reduce by half.
  2. Whisk the egg yolks in a bowl until very frothy. Place the bowl over a pan of boiling water and gradually add the stock and sherry reduction, whisking as you go until the mixture thickens.
Ah, wonderful, seemingly simple, and at the same time, a feast of its own. I am motivated to try this. Sabayon looks lovely. Can one taste the sherry at in it? I imagine how well it contrasts the kale, and how the sabayon and the hake work well together, brilliant combination!
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