Spit-Cooked Turbot with Panisses and Caper Sauce

Credit: Didier Loire
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Ingredients (6 people)

Caper Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons cooking olive oil (3 cl)
  • 5 1/4 ounces shallots, thinly sliced (150 g)
  • 1 3/4 ounces almonds (50 g)
  • 20 black peppercorns
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 sprigs dried fennel
  • 3 1/2 ounces fresh fennel, chopped (100 g)
  • 2 cups light chicken stock (50 cl)
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar (3 cl)
  • 7 ounces brown butter (200 g)
  • 1 3/4 ounces small capers (50 g)
  • 4 teaspoons balsamic vinegar (2 cl)

Panisses and Tomatoes

  • 1/2 pound chickpea flour (250 g)
  • 1 1/2 pints water (80 cl)
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil (2 cl)
  • 54 wedges oven-dried tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 quarts grapeseed oil (1.5 l)
  • 8 basil leaves
  • fleur de sel


Step 1: Turbot

Cut off the head and tail of the turbot, clean, and soak in cold, salted water. Reserve the head for the sauce. Trim, clean, and split the turbot in two along the central bone. Remove the skin and any gray parts.

Pat the chunks of turbot dry on a cloth, season with coarse salt, and refrigerate for 3 hours.

Rinse the fish, pat dry, and cut into 1/2 pound (250 g) steaks. Truss like a roast.

Step 2: Caper Sauce

Lightly brown the shallots, almonds, black pepper, and lemon slices in some olive oil. Add the fresh and dried fennel, the boiling light stock, and the turbot head. Simmer over a low heat for 40 minutes.

Filter the resulting consommé, and reduce to bring out the flavors. Season with 4 teaspoons (2 cl) of sherry vinegar. Add a dab of fresh butter, and emulsify with brown butter.

Sauté the capers in a dab of butter, and deglaze with the remaining sherry vinegar.

Add the emulsified stock and the balsamic vinegar, then season with fleur de sel and freshly ground pepper.

This recipe was originally published in "Culinary Encyclopedia by Alain Ducasse" (Éditions Alain Ducasse). See all credits

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