Today I want to tell you about a fish that I love, the turbot. In the fishmongers, we find this fantastic product in two varieties, the one from aquaculture or hatchery and the so-called wild turbot, whose best season coincides with the summer season. So when is the best time to consume turbot, we have selected seven good recipes so you can enjoy it.
Due to its white meat, fine fat with a gelatinous texture and its easy cooking, it is a highly appreciated product in gastronomy, so It is a fish that is very present in the menu of most restaurants and grills.. In stews, grilled or cooked in the oven, turbot has many possibilities, as it is a versatile ingredient.
Characteristics of turbot
The turbot is a variety of flatfish, of form between rhomboid and circular, that has both eyes on one side like many species of fish that usually live in shallow bottoms. As for its size, it can reach up to a meter in length, although most do not usually exceed 50 or 60 cm in adulthood.
Due to its shape, it always sails with one side up, heavily pigmented in greyish color and with characteristic spots on the skin, and other side down, almost white.
Regarding the nutritional aspects, It is a well valued fish, since due to its content of Omega 3 fatty acids it is considered as a blue Fish, although in reality it is a semi-fat ingredient whose percentage in that ingredient does not reach 5% of its weight, like other fish such as sea bream, sea bass or sea bream, so for nutritionists it is a White fish.
It does not have many vitamins Unlike other fish rich in fatty acids, although it is high in potassium, selenium and phosphorus in terms of mineral contribution. Due to its few calories and easy digestion, it is considered a perfect ingredient for slimming diets.
Values for every 100g of product: Calories: 98 kcal, Total fat: 3-4%, does not contain hydrates or cholesterol, and proteins, approximately 18 g.
Differences between wild and hatchery
The aquaculture technique has managed to supply the market practically all year round, although the wild one is usually caught between the end of May and the beginning of October, coinciding with the summer season.
The farm or hatchery has the light colored spots since it does not usually have the dark spots that arise from pigmentation, which wild turbot has. In addition, cultivated turbot usually has a little more fat. To be sure and choose the one we want, another important difference is in the small bumps or rounded bumps that the wild turbot has on the loins and that do not exist in the farmed turbot.
Ways to cook turbot
- Roast: works well as in most fish. The fish should be roasted in a very hot oven and with clean and seasoned turbot, being the ideal way for large and medium-sized pieces. With a temperature around 190ºC, it is perfect, being recommended to spread the skin of the fish with oil or butter so that it does not dry out. In the Getaria area of the Basque Country it is frequent roast the turbot on a charcoal grill, with a spectacular result. It is advisable to spread the pieces of fish with olive oil or butter so that they do not dry out. The loss of vitamins is inevitable, although it depends on the baking time and the temperature.
- Stews: In the case of turbot, it is not the most common way, although it can be cooked in stews preparing a vegetable stock that will prevent it from drying out during the long cooking. Being a long process, it means more loss of nutrients, which can mean a reduction in flavor.
- Steamed: In steamed or papillote dishes, steaming is a good option to keep the nutrients in this fish intact. It is not the best way to highlight its flavor, so it is not very common in restaurants, although, in the case of weight loss diets, it is a great option in which we do not add fat to the fish during its preparation.
1. Baked turbot Dani García style
We ask the fishmonger to remove the tripe from the turbot. Once at home we wash under the cold water tap to remove the slime that covers it and remove the remains of blood that it may contain inside.
We peel the potatoes and onions and roll. Place in a clay dish, season and sprinkle with extra virgin olive oil. We take the source to the oven, preheated to 190-200º C, and cook them for between 20 and 30 minutes. The exact time it will depend on the thickness.
Meanwhile we prepare the turbot. We cut transversely following the column, from the head to the tail. We open a little each of the four spines, gently sliding the blade of the knife as close to the thorns as possible.
The idea is to make room to be able dress the interior and it is tastier. Dani García uses fennel, mixing the leaves with salt and pepper. We have dispensed with the fennel and seasoned only with salt and ground black pepper.
Once the potato and onion have been in the oven (which will be half cooked), remove the source and pour in half the white wine. We place the turbot on top and add the rest of the wine. We take to the oven and roast at 200ºC for 25 minutes. We spray cider vinegar on the fish two or three times, avoiding the last ten minutes. This will make the skin drier and crispier.
We season the prawns. Peel and slice the garlic cloves and place them in a pan with plenty of extra virgin olive oil. We heat the oil and we add the seeds chilli peppers. We stir when the garlic begins to “dance”.
Next we add a teaspoon of paprika and immediately after we add the prawns. Remove from the heat, stir and cook the prawns with the residual heat of the oil. We remove the turbot from the oven, cover with the garlic prawns and serve.
More details in the full recipe
2. Grilled turbot loins with artichokes
- Ingredients: 1 turbot of about 2 kg, 2 cloves of garlic, parsley to taste and 6 canned artichokes
- Elaboration: This recipe is very attractive, very healthy and very tasty. To make it, we will have bought a large turbot and we will have asked the fishmonger to remove the four loins. With a turbot, 4 people can eat perfectly, taking into account that the waste on the head and bones is almost half the weight of the fish. Of course we will use those rasps to make a great broth or stock. We varnish a hot grill with olive oil and cook the turbot loins for 4 minutes on each side, starting with the skin. While they are being made, we chop the garlic and parsley and make a garlic sauce. When we have done the fish on both sides, we add the garlic to the turbot on the meat side. While the fish is cooking, we remove the artichoke hearts from their preserves, cut them in half and cook them for 5 minutes with a little white wine and a little of the canning liquid. We serve them as a garnish for the fish.
More details in the full recipe
3. Baked turbot with light sauce
- Ingredients: Turbot of 1.5 kg approximately, 4 Potatoes, 1 Natural Yogurt, Mayonnaise 2 tablespoons, Chives 1/4, Parsley, Salt and pepper to taste
- Elaboration: When I want to eat a fish with brown and tasty meat, sometimes I opt for baked snapper with cooked potatoes, when I want blue fish or I choose turbot when I want white fish. In this case, to make everything light, we will cook the turbot on the grill and the potatoes will be boiled. We start by peeling the potatoes and cutting them into irregular pieces, then putting them to cook with a little salt. Boiled potatoes will give us energy and help us feel satisfied without using fat in its preparation. To make the light sauce, which we will use for both the potatoes and the turbot, we mix the yogurt with the mayonnaise and add the chives, the coriander (or parsley if you don’t like it) and the chives, all very chopped. We whisk well and reserve it to dress the potatoes and sauce the fish to taste. We drain the potatoes and distribute them on the four plates. Meanwhile, we lightly varnish the loins of the turbot with olive oil and cook them on the very hot griddle so that they brown, making the skin side first. We immediately assemble the dish, placing the turbot next to the potatoes and add a tablespoon of light sauce well distributed. We put the rest of the sauce aside so that whoever needs more can be served.
More details in the full recipe
4. Turbot gratin with potatoes
- Ingredients: 1 medium turbot in fillets, 2 potatoes, 1 sweet onion, liquid cooking cream, 200 ml, ground black pepper, salt, extra virgin olive oil, parsley
- Elaboration: Preheat the oven to 200º C and grease a dish with a little oil. Wash and peel the potatoes. Cut into thin slices, less than half a centimeter thick. Peel and cut the onion into thin strips. Cut the fish into tacos. Line the bottom of the dish with a layer of potatoes. Salt and pepper and distribute over 3/4 of the onion. Place the turbot, season and cover with the rest of the onion. Finish with a layer of potatoes. Season with salt and pepper and cover with the light cream. Place on a rack in the lower part of the oven. Bake for about 55-60 minutes, lowering the temperature to 180º C after 10 minutes. Serve with one more hit of freshly ground black pepper and chopped fresh parsley.
More details in the full recipe
5. Turbot with vermouth by chef José Andrés
- Ingredients: Two portion-size turbot loins (300 g total), 100 ml of red vermouth, 100 ml of liquid cream, 1/2 chives, 20 currants, 2 slices of bacon, 20 g of butter
- Elaboration: We start by making the fillets of the turbot on the grill with a little butter, to brown them a little. Once they are ready, we reserve them. We put on the sauce, which we will cook in a wide pan in which the turbot will also fit later when we return them to the stew. We chop the chives and make it with the rest of the …