Poached whiting, summer vegetable broth and chervil dumplings

Poached whiting, summer vegetable broth and chervil dumplings

British Seafood
David Loftus

A light dish, bursting with summer flavours, this recipe works perfectly with the smaller whiting fillets that are more readily available. Poaching the fish in this way is a wonderful way of cooking it, as none of the flavour is lost – it simply enhances the broth.


Quantity Ingredient
4 whiting fillets, skinned, trimmed, cut in half and pin-boned
light rapeseed oil, for cooking
cornish sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Vegetable broth

Quantity Ingredient
olive oil, for cooking
2 shallots, peeled and diced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and diced
4 celery sticks, washed, peeled and diced
200ml Vegetable stock
200ml Roast fish stock
8 swiss chard stems, washed
100g green beans, trimmed and sliced into 1 cm pieces
2 courgettes, trimmed and diced
4 tomatoes, skinned, deseeded and chopped
100ml double cream
50g unsalted butter
4 teaspoons chervil, chopped, plus extra sprigs to finish

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
Potato, garlic and herb dumplings


  1. Have the dumplings prepared and ready to finish and serve.
  2. For the broth, heat a large saucepan over a medium heat, then add a good drizzle of olive oil. When hot, add the shallots, garlic, fennel and celery and sweat for 2 minutes without colouring, stirring all the time. Pour in both stocks and bring up to a simmer. Let simmer for 6 minutes. Meanwhile, separate the chard leaves from their stalks. Finely dice the stalks and shred the leaves. Add to the broth with the green beans, courgettes and tomatoes. Simmer gently for 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, season the portions of whiting with salt and pepper. Heat a non-stick frying pan and add a drizzle of oil. When hot, add the dumplings and cook, turning, for 2–3 minutes until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper and keep warm.
  4. Add the whiting fillets to the simmering broth and turn off the heat. Cover and allow the heat of the broth to cook the fish for 4 minutes.
  5. Divide the dumplings between 4 warmed shallow bowls. Carefully remove the whiting from the broth with a spatula and place in the bowls. Add the cream and butter to the broth and quickly bring back to a simmer. Now add the chopped chervil. Ladle the broth and vegetables over and around the fish. Finish with chervil sprigs and serve.
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