A beurre blanc sauce is another one of those things that’s got a bit of an unnecessarily harsh reputation at being difficult to execute, however it is one of life’s most decadent and guilty pleasures. What do you expect from a sauce that’s just basically some white wine and melted butter? Coupled with the juices of the clams, the hint of citrus and then topped with the almost perfectly cooked lean white fish and then accented with the crispy sprinkles of the bresaola crumble… ohmy. Although quite a few different ingredients go into this dish, none of the processes are too difficult or time-consuming or complex. However, when a make this plate again, i would probably leave out the clams; they didn’t bring much in terms of flavor and just cluttered the plate while also adding an extra step. The crumble was helpful in adding an extra dimension to the flavor profile, it was both herby and meaty. Anyway, you’ll find the recipe after the jump.
For the sauce (I’ve included the clams here, but feel free to remove them):
Remember, a good beurre blanc is all about two things: 1. Whisking furiously and 2. Balance. By balance I mean, to get it too hot, or it will split, don’t let it cool down too much, or it will split, don’t add too much butter, or it will split, don’t add far too little butter, or it won’t emulsify and don’t leave it on the heat for too long, serve as close to immediately as possible.
Serves 4 portions
1 cup of dry white wine
2 chopped shallots
12 tbs of cold cubed butter
2 tbsp of lemon juice
1 tbsp of orange zest
1 large tomato or 2 small ones, peeled, deseeded and cut into pee-sized cubes
16 small clams
In a saucepan and over a medium high heat, add the shallots, the wine and the clams and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to bring to a simmer and remove the clams individually with a spoon as they open up and reserve on the side. Allow the wine to simmer and reduce by half (15ish mins) and then add the butter whisking each cube into the wine strongly until it’s emulsified and incorporated into the sauce. Once all the butter is in the sauce, remove the shallots using a sieve and return the sauce back into the saucepan. Add the orange zest and the tomatoes, and keep simmering for 3-5 minutes for all the flavors to come together, season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
For the crumble:
50g of bresaola very thinly sliced and then chopped
1 tbsp of parsley finely chopped
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp of breadcrumbs
In a very small pan and over a medium heat, heat no more than a tsp of olive oil and allow the garlic to soften in it for 3-5 minutes, without browning at all. Add the bresaola and the breadcrumbs and stir together for a few minutes, again, allowing the meat to crisp up but making sure nothing burns. Sprinkle the parsley and stir together on the heat for another 30s to 1min.
For the fish:
4 x 250g 1-2cm thick fillets of grouper
Season the fish with salt and pepper, and in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat, add a couple of tbsp of olive oil, once hot, add the fish fillets skin side up. Cook for about 3-4 minutes, until you see the meat turn opaque from the side to at least 3/4 of the way through the fillet. Flip over the skin side and cook for another 2-3mins, depending on the thickness of the fillets. Remove the skin
I recommend using a deep plate, add the clams to the plate, spoon over the tomato beurre blanc, place the fish fillets and then sprinkle the crumble on top. Hope you enjoy!