The Crooked Billet

Monkfish Baked in Parma Ham, Confit Lemon, White Beans & Chorizo

Serves 4

Monkfish Baked in Parma Ham, Confit Lemon, White Beans & Chorizo

Why is it that chefs always wrap monkfish in Parma ham! Try tightly rolling your Parma ham wrapped monkfish in cling film; twist the cling film ends like a sweet wrapper, making the parcel really tight, then refrigerate for 12 hours. You end up with a perfectly shaped cylinder & the ham doesn’t fall off. Remove the film before cooking!

For the Monkfish:

4 pieces monkfish fillet, 160g each

8 wafers of Parma ham

For the Warm Salad:

100g haricot blanc, soaked for 24 hours in cold water & then cooked until soft (or a tin of)

Zest of cannellini beans, rinsed

2 large organic lemons

Tbsp castor sugar

100g chorizo, 1cm dice

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 bunch watercress

Olive oil

Juice of ½ lemon

Malden salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Wrap the monkfish in the Parma ham. Put a small pan on the hob, in with 100ml water, bring to simmer, add the sugar & allow it to dissolve. Blanche the lemon zest in the sugar water then immediately strain through a sieve. Pat the lemon zest dry on kitchen paper.

Place a large ovenproof non-stick frying pan on a moderate hob, add a fine film of olive oil & when the oil is hot, seal the monkfish on all sides, then into the preheated oven for 7-10 minutes.

Place another non-stick frying pan on a moderate hob, put in the chorizo & gently warm the chorizo so that the paprika oil slowly renders out. Add the garlic, stirring around the pan for a minute.

Warm the beans in the pan, letting them soak up the chorizo & garlic flavours. Reserve these ingredients & keep them warm.

When the monkfish is cooked, remove it from the oven & let it rest on a warm plate for 5-7 minutes.

Fold the lemon zest & watercress through the pan of warm chorizo & beans, season & dress with lemon juice.

Divide the warm lemon, chorizo & bean salad between 4 warmed dinner plates. Carve each monkfish fillet into 3 or 4 pieces & present over the warm salad.