Abbey’s Pan Fried Whiting is complimented with Pickled and Fresh Plums, Witlof and a Mint Vinaigrette.
Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil. Prepare an ice bath in a small bowl.
For the Pickled Plums, cut one plum into half and discard the stone. Peel and discard the skin then dice the flesh into 5mm cubes and set aside in a small bowl.
Place the vinegar, sugar and a pinch of salt into a small saucepan and stir over a medium heat until the sugar has dissolved.
Remove from the heat and pour the hot liquid over the diced plum. Set aside to cool.
For the Fresh Plums, slice the cheeks from the remaining plums into thin 2mm thick rounds. Cover and set aside in the fridge.
For the Fresh Witlof petals, fill a medium bowl with cold water and add the lemon juice. Trim the bases from each witlof and remove the large outer leaves. Using a 2cm round cutter, cut 28 rounds from the outer leaves. Place into the lemon water and set aside in the fridge.
For the Sautéed Witlof, cut the each witlof heart lengthways into 6 wedges.
Place the grapeseed oil into a medium frypan and place over a medium heat. Add the oil and when hot, add the witlof.
Cook the witlof until very lightly golden, about 1 minute then add the butter and cook until the witlof has softened slightly, about 1 minute. Remove from the pan and set aside.
For the Mint Vinaigrette, blanch the whole mint leaves in boiling water until bright green, about 30 seconds. Remove from the water and place into the ice bath. Once cold, drain well and squeeze in several sheets of paper towel to remove excess water.
Place the leaves into the canister of a stick blender or into a small food processor along with the grapeseed oil. Process until smooth then strain through a fine, muslin lined sieve, into a small bowl. Once the oil has strained through, add the vinegar, salt and pepper.
Set aside in the fridge and add the shredded mint leaves prior to serving.
For the Pan Fried Whiting, cut each fillet in half lengthways then into 5cm lengths. Place pieces onto a tray, skin side up, and season with salt.
Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Dust the whiting fillets in the seasoned flour, shake off excess and set aside.
Place a large frypan over medium high heat. Add the half of the oil and butter to the pan and when hot, add half of the whiting portions to the pan, skin side down. Cook until the skin is crispy and the flesh is almost cooked through, about 1 ½ - 2 minutes. Turn the fillets over in the pan to seal then remove from the pan. Add remaining oil and butter and cook remaining whiting portions. Remove from the pan. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm.
To serve, arrange whiting portions onto the serving plates. Top with the Pickled and Fresh Plums and the Sautéed and Fresh Witlof. Finish with a drizzle of Mint Vinaigrette.