Halibut with sautéed mushrooms and potato wrapped deep-fried quail’s eggs

At its heart this is a really simple dish of fried fish served with beautifully cooked veg, but a deep-fried quail’s egg ups the ante.

Equipment and preparation: for this recipe you will need a spiraliser for the potato-wrapped quail’s eggs.


For the vegetables
  • 500ml/18fl oz chicken stock
  • 125g/4½oz unsalted butter
  • 400g/14oz wild mushrooms (preferably a mix of morels, ceps and black trumpets)
  • 100ml/3½fl oz double cream
  • 150g/5oz purple sprouting broccoli, cut into small florets
  • 1½ bunches baby heritage carrots, in a mix of colours
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the halibut
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 fillets halibut, skin on and pin-boned, seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 100g/3½oz unsalted butter
  • 8 sprigs fresh chervil, to garnish
For the potato wrapped, deep-fried quail’s eggs
  • vegetable oil, for deep frying
  • 1 large potato, peeled
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 12 quail’s eggs, soft boiled

Preparation method

  1. Put the chicken stock in a saucepan set over a medium-high heat. Cook until the volume of liquid has reduced by a third.

  2. For the halibut, heat a large frying pan and add the oil. When hot, add the fish skin-side down and cook for 2-3 minutes. Turn the fish over and cook for a further 2-3 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, for the mushrooms, heat a large frying pan and add 50g/1¾oz of the butter. When the butter is foaming, add the mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the cream and reduced stock, then season with salt and pepper.

  4. Heat a large saucepan of boiling water and blanch the broccoli and carrots. When tender, drain and refresh the vegetables in ice-cold water.

  5. Heat a large frying pan and add the remaining butter, once hot add the broccoli and carrots and cook for 1-2 minutes.

  6. Preheat a deep-fat fryer to 180C. Alternatively, heat the vegetable oil in a deep-sided, heavy bottomed pan until a breadcrumb turns golden-brown when added to the pan. (CAUTION: Hot oil is dangerous. Do not leave unattended).

  7. For the halibut, add the butter to the pan and baste the fish. Set aside to rest before serving.

  8. For the quail eggs, put the potato onto the spiraliser and turn to create long strands of potato. Place in a bowl with the egg yolk and mix to coat the potato. Wrap the spiralised potato around the quail’s eggs. Place in the deep fryer for 1-2 minutes and drain on kitchen paper.

  9. Place the fish in the centre of serving plates and arrange the vegetables, mushrooms and quail eggs around the fish. Garnish with a few sprigs of chervil and serve.

Required techniques

James Martin recipes from Saturday Kitchen

Less than 30 mins preparation time

30 mins to 1 hour cooking time

Serves 4

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