Smoked eel with new potatoes, leeks and clam beurre blanc

Smoked eel is a delicious alternative to smoked eel. Try it in this sophisticated recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1kg/2lb 2oz smoked eel fillets
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 50g/2oz butter
  • 16 small new potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 12 baby leeks, trimmed
  • 1 punnet pea shoots
  • handful baby watercress leaves
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
For the clam beurre blanc
  • 2 shallots, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 275ml/10fl oz white wine
  • 225g/8oz butter, cut into cubes
  • 500g/1lb 2oz clams
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped fresh chives

Preparation method

  1. Season the eel with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

  2. Heat a frying pan until hot, add the butter and eel and cook on each side for 2-3 minutes, or until golden-brown.

  3. Bring a pan of water to the boil, place a steamer on top then add the potatoes and leeks and cover with a lid. Steam for 5-7 minutes until just tender.

  4. Mix the pea shoots and watercress leaves together in a bowl with the olive oil.

  5. For the clam beurre blanc, place the shallots, white wine vinegar and four tablespoons of the white wine in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and reduce the liquid until there is about two tablespoons.

  6. Add one tablespoon of cold water and continue to cook until there is one tablespoon of liquid.

  7. Reduce the heat and whisk in the butter, a cube at a time. Remove the pan from the heat and strain the sauce through a sieve into another saucepan.

  8. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan until hot, add the clams and remaining wine, cover with a lid and cook for 2-3 minutes until the clams have opened. (Discard any clams that do not open.)

  9. Remove the pan from the heat and strain the liquid into a bowl.

  10. Remove the meat from half the clams and add them to the beurre blanc sauce.

  11. Add a little of the reserved cooking liquor to taste, then season with salt and black pepper and stir in the chives.

  12. To serve, scatter the potatoes and leeks over the plate and top with the eel.

  13. Scatter the leaves around the plate and drizzle over beurre blanc. Garnish with the remaining cooked clams.

James Martin recipes from Saturday Kitchen

Less than 30 mins preparation time

10 to 30 mins cooking time

Serves 4

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