Tales of salt: smoked haddock and sautéed potatoes

By Steve Kielty and Laphroaig

  • Serves2
  • DifficultyMedium

For the sauce

150ml white wine
300ml double cream
100ml full fat milk
1 bay leaf
Trimmings from haddock fillets (see below)

For the potatoes

300g peeled Maris Piper potatoes, chopped into 1cm cubes
100g butter
1 tbsp olive oil
2 rashers smoked streaky bacon, chopped
½ large onion, finely diced
Pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the haddock

2 un-dyed Scottish smoked skinned and trimmed haddock fillets (keep trimmings for the sauce)
Small bunch of finely chopped chives
Fresh garden herbs, to garnish

Tasting notes

Like a dip in the ocean. Let the sea-fresh saltiness wash over your palette before diving deeper into the subtle smoky undertones. All washed down with a dram of your finest.

Method

For the sauce

1. Using a pan large enough to hold both fillets of fish in one layer, heat the wine until it reduces by half. Before removing and allowing it cool for a couple of minutes.

2. Add the cream, milk, bay leaf and haddock trimmings to the pan and return to a medium heat, slowly bringing it to the boil.

3. Once the sauce is boiling, turn the heat down to low and gently cook for 10 minutes. This will allow the flavours to infuse.

4. Take off the heat and strain to remove the haddock trimmings and bay leaf, which can be discarded. Return the sauce to the clean pan and set aside until you are ready to cook the fish. 

For the potatoes 

1. Fill a large pan with water, add a pinch of salt and bring to the boil. 

2. Add the potatoes and simmer for a few minutes until the potatoes have softened and can be easily pierced with a knife. Drain and set aside. Be careful not to overcook the potatoes at this stage as they’ll be cooked again later. 

3. Heat the butter and oil in a frying pan until they begin to foam before adding the chopped bacon. Cook until the bacon starts to crisp.

4. Add the onion and cook for a further 5 minutes until the onion is soft.

5. Add the potatoes to the bacon and onion and increase the heat. Cook until lightly browned, stirring constantly. Season to taste with salt and pepper and keep warm until ready to serve.

For the haddock 

1. Reheat the sauce gently until it is about to boil. 

2. Reduce the heat so that the sauce is barely simmering and add the fillets in an even layer.

3. Cook gently for 1-3 minutes on one side, depending on the thickness of the fillets. If the fillets are not fully covered by the sauce, flip them over and cook for a further 1-3 minutes.

4. Carefully remove the fillets from the pan once they are cooked and drain on a plate until ready to serve.

5. To finish the dish, turn the heat up and reduce the sauce slightly until it coats the back of a wooden spoon.  Stir through the chopped chives and season to taste.

Serving suggestion

Place a portion of the sautéed potatoes in the middle of a plate and top with a haddock fillet. Spoon some smoky sauce around the potatoes and over the top of the haddock. Dress with garden herbs and serve.