As far a seasonal produce goes, wild garlic is currently right on the money! Anyone fond of a woodland walk has an extra reason to don their wellies, as it’s likely you’ll run into plenty of wild garlic! But the season for wild garlic is short and they’re gone by June, so make sure to take advantage of this delicious ingredient, that’s also packed full of health benefits.
We’ve served it up with hake alongside jersey royals or gnocchi to create at home. We’d love to see you seasonal creations, find us on social media and just hashtag #CorriganRecipes
Hake with wild garlic pesto – Serves four
One 2kg whole hake, or two smaller pieces
Four big handfuls of wild garlic/ ramsons leaves
50g pine nuts
100ml extra virgin olive oil
A little oil for cooking
A little butter
1. Start by preparing the fish. Remove the fins and the head, cut the fish into four steaks, and remove any small bones from the top. There won’t be many, which is one of the joys of choosing hake.
2. Salt a basin of cold water and put the wild garlic leaves into it. Swirl with your hand and leave it to soak for ten or 15minutes.Rinse the wild garlic in a colander or a sieve, and leave it to drain for a few minutes. Then dry it off, a little at a time, in a salad spinner.
3. Take the stalks off the garlic leaves, but don’t throw them away, as you will need them later. Put the leaves into a blender and pulse a few times to get the process of the pesto making started. Then add the pine nuts and the olive oil, and whizz until they are combined.
4. Stir in the Parmesan, pour the pesto into a bowl, cover, and set aside. The flavour will keep on improving. The pesto should be a good, thick sauce, if you want to adjust the consistency you can always add more olive oil or more of the Parmesan.
5. Season the fish. Heat some oil in a pan and when it’s very hot, slide in the fish pieces. Cook on both sides until just done. You don’t want to dry out your hake, so keep a close eye on it, and press with your finger to see how it’s doing.
6. Take the fish off the pan and keep it warm. Add a little butter to the hot pan, then add the stalks of the wild garlic and toss briefly. Take off the heat and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and a little lemon juice.
7. Arrange the wild garlic stalks on hot plates, put a piece of fish on top and serve with the pesto sauce on the side. This is very good with roasted early potatoes or with gnocchi.