Grow Recipe Of The Month – Introducing Paul Brinicombe
Paul Brinicombe has a wealth of experience in the culinary world. Starting at the tender age of 16, he trained in catering in the RAF. Since then he has worked in several pubs and hotels, such as The Royal Clarence and The Double Locks before progressing to the role of Head Chef at Southernhay House. He currently holds the Head Chef role at The Clifford in Shaldon.
Autumn for me as a chef is the best time for local ingredients, local game is at its peak in September and October and the abundance of locally caught seafood is at its very best. Working on the coast is an absolute dream and the view of the Teign estuary every morning on the way to work gives me great motivation for the day. The recipe I’m showing you this month is fantastic for those lazy autumnal evenings and really showcases what Devon has to offer.
600g potatoes, roughly chopped
400g undyed smoked haddock fillet
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp capers, drained and chopped
Grated zest of 1 lemon
Small handful chopped fresh parsley
1 medium egg yolk
Plain flour, for dusting
Lemon wedges, to serve
For the confit fennel
2 Tbs. unsalted butter
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil (more if needed)
1 large or two small fennel bulbs (about 1-1/4 lb.), tops trimmed, quartered, cored, and very thinly sliced crosswise
Cook the potatoes in a saucepan of boiling, salted water for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain well, mash and set aside, covered.
Meanwhile, preheat the grill to medium-high. Put the haddock in a roasting tin and brush with 1 tablespoon oil. Grill for 8-10 minutes or until just cooked through. Set aside to cool, then discard the skin and bones and flake into chunks.
Gently fold the haddock, capers, lemon zest, parsley and egg yolk into the mash and season. Shape the mixture into 8 fishcakes and cover and chill for 20 minutes or overnight.
In a large straight-sided sauté pan with a lid, melt the butter with the olive oil over low to medium-low heat. Add the fennel and 1/2 tsp. salt, stir well and cover. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally, until very limp, about 15 minutes. Raise the heat to medium and cook uncovered, stirring frequently, until the fennel is a deep golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes more. Keep warm.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Dust the fishcakes with a little flour and fry for 3-4 minutes each side, until golden. Serve 2 per person with plenty of lemon juice, confit fennel and a mixed salad, if you like.