If you throw a mean dinner party, this is a recipe you need in your repertoire. Girolles are a real treat of autumn and their floral nuttiness is wonderfully accentuated by the fresh halibut. Halibut is a meaty fish with large flakes and stands up beautifully to this richly flavoured sauce.
- 250g Girolle mushrooms, cleaned
- 1 Large shallot or onion, roughly chopped
- 100g Smoked bacon, finely diced
- 3 tbsp Olive oil
- 200g Fresh spinach
- 100g Unsalted butter
- 50ml White wine
- 100ml Double cream
- 2 x 180g Halibut fillets
- Few sprigs of fresh thyme
1. First make a quick mushroom stock using a handful of the cleaned girolles and any offcuts from the rest of the mushrooms. Bring these to the boil in a small pan of water with the shallot or onion and leave at a vigorous simmer as you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
2. Sauté the remaining girolles in 40g of the butter and one tablespoon of olive oil. They will release a little liquid and once this has evaporated they will begin to fry and colour. Once they are golden, add the white wine to the pan and let it reduce then pour in the cream along with a little mushroom stock. Leave this to bubble and cook as you prepare the other ingredients, adding a little extra stock when it becomes too thick.
3. While the mushrooms are cooking, put the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a hot, heavy-bottomed frying pan then add the diced bacon and stir frequently until it is just golden. Remove the bacon from the pan and set aside. Turn the heat off and pour away most of the fat from the frying pan. Put the spinach in the pan and turn a few times – the pan should retain enough heat to wilt the leaves, if not though just pop it back over a low heat until they are cooked. Remove from the pan and set aside.
4. Add the cooked bacon to the cream sauce.
5. Using the same frying pan as before, fry the halibut skin side down on a medium to high heat with a drizzle of olive. After three to four minutes the skin should be crisp and golden; turn the fish to get a little colour on all the other sides. When it is nearly cooked turn it back on the skin and add the rest of the butter and the thyme. Use a spoon to keep the melted butter moving over the fish.
6. Adjust the seasoning of the sauce as desired and add more stock, if needed. Serve spooned over the halibut with the spinach on the side.