Adapted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child
As I have said before, I love fish cooked in a white wine sauce. These poached fish filets have an extra punch with the creamy bercy sauce and the cheese on top. The original recipe is made with 3 ½ cups of sliced fresh mushrooms, sautéed in butter, but I omitted them because I don’t like them. I am putting the proportions written in the book (for about 6 people) but I made half.
- 2 ½ lbs skinless boneless sole or flounder filets cut into serving pieces
- 1 ½ tbsp butter cut into bits
- ¾ cup dry white wine
- 2 ½ tbsp flour blended with 3 tbsp of softened butter to make paste
- ¾ cup whipping cream
- Lemon Juice
- ¼ cup grated Gruyère cheese
- Preheat oven to 350F (177C).
- Season the filets lightly with salt and pepper. Arrange them in one slightly overlapping layer in the greased 10- to 12-inch baking dish. Dot with butter. Pour in the white wine.
- Lay waxed paper (do not use aluminum foil) over the fish. Place the dish in the bottom third of the preheated oven. Cook for about 12 minutes. The fish is done when a fork pierces the flesh easily. Do not overcook.
- Remove from the oven when done and drain out all the cooking liquid into a saucepan.
- Preheat the broiler.
- Boil down the poaching liquid until it has reduced to 1 cup.
- Off heat, beat the flour and butter paste into the hot liquid, then ½ cup of the cream. Bring to a boil. Thin out the sauce with additional tablespoons of cream. Season to taste with salt, pepper and drops of lemon juice.
- Pour the sauce over the fish. Sprinkle on the cheese. Place the dish 6 to 7 inches from the broiler for about 3 minutes to reheat the fish and brown the top of the sauce lightly. Serve immediately.
Comments: The original recipe calls for sole filets, which are hard to find in the U.S. Usually, the filets sold as sole in the U.S. is flounder, which can be substituted in this recipe. I used cod filets, which work as well. Other options are whiting or silver hake, dab, tilefish, fresh-water trout, halibut, pollack, striped bass and monkfish. I accompanied this dish with the aubergine fries from this blog http://goodfoodmarsh.wordpress.com/2014/08/27/spicy-aubergine-fries/ , which were delicious, but it would also go well with rice, potatoes or roasted vegetables.