Grilled Herring with calcium rich leaves, orange zest puree, crunchy seeds and feta

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This dish can be adapted in many ways. The herring can be substituted for tuna, mackerel or trout for instance however I’ve used herring because it has the highest Vitamin D levels. The seeds are not only a great way of providing texture but also bring increased amounts of Omega 3 and 6 to the dish.

Makes 2 servings:

4 herring fillets (scaled, filleted and boned by your fish monger)
1 bunch watercress
1 bunch rocket
1 small tub alfalfa sprouts
5g coriander seeds
20g sunflower seeds
20g hemp seeds
20 pumpkin seeds
1 tsp light soy sauce
80g feta cheese diced
5 oranges (peeled using a potato peeler to obtain large strips of orange zest)
orange juice from the peeled oranges
20g rapeseed oil

Ensure the herring has been properly scaled and pinboned then place on a non-stick tray skin side up. Wash the rocket and watercress salads and pat dry.

In a pan roast 50 per cent of the combined seeds at 180°c for eight minutes or until lightly toasted. Remove from the oven and leave for five minutes to slightly cool, then add the teaspoon of soy sauce and combine well adding the remaining seeds.

Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the orange zest and boil for five minutes. Drain the water and repeat until the zest stops tasting bitter (approximately five times).

Once the zest is blanched enough to remove all bitterness, transfer it to a blender and blend with 20g of rapeseed oil, some orange juice and seasoning to obtain a thick silky purée.

Place the herring under the grill until just cooked (probably around five minutes max).

Spoon some of the orange purée onto the plate. Decorate with the salad leaves, plenty of seeds and the feta, finally arranging the cooked herring on top.

Preparation time: 45 minutes including making the purée

Cooking time: For the herring maximum five minutes

Chef's tip:

Only 50 per cent of the seeds are roasted because it is believed that Omega 3 and 6 may break down with heat, so by only roasting 50 per cent, the unheated seeds should retain their nutrients with the roasted seeds providing the flavour.

Drizzle any juices from cooking the fish over the salad.

I have allowed for an excess of seeds because they are so moorish that once you have tasted them you will find it hard not to eat them all before serving the dish!

You do need a very good blender with a sharp blade to get a silky purée, however if the purée is a little rough it will still taste as good. Using a pestle and mortar to grind the zest may also work.

Courtesy of Chris Horridge, Head Chef, The Bath Priory, Hotel and Restaurant