I've been using grey mullet for years and even used to fish for them as a kid in West Bay harbour in Dorset. When grey mullet have been in the sea, as opposed to up a muddy river, they taste great – certainly on a par with bass. Over the years, I've tweaked their name a little for menu purposes as they are more silver than grey and the word silver is so much more appealing than grey. Try to buy larger fish as you will get a better, thicker fillet.
4 fillets of grey mullet weighing about 180-200g each
A couple of good knobs of butter
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the green split-pea sauce
80g green split peas, soaked in cold water for 2 hours
4 shallots, peeled, halved and finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
1tsp cumin seeds, chopped
1 small red chilli, finely chopped
1tbsp olive oil plus a couple of extra tablespoons or so
200ml vegetable stock
2tbsp chopped coriander
First make the green split-pea sauce: simmer the split peas in lightly salted water for about 15-20 minutes until they still have just a little bite. Meanwhile, gently cook the shallots, garlic, cumin and chilli in the butter for 2-3 minutes until soft. Drain the split peas and add to the shallots with the stock, season and simmer on a medium heat until the liquid has nearly all evaporated, the peas are tender and they are a spooning consistency. Stir in the coriander and adjust the consistency with some extra olive oil if necessary.
Season the grey mullet fillets, heat the butter in a frying pan until it's beginning to foam and cook the fillets, skin-side down first for 2-3 minutes on each side. Spoon the peas on to serving plates and place the mullet on top.