Life’s a Feast: poached fish in white wine


Frosty mornings are now becoming more of a regularity than a rarity, and the evenings a lot cooler.

Therefore, I feel the need for comfort! This smokey, poached fish dish is just what the weather commands– warm, comforting and moreish. People are often nervous about cooking fish, probably because it is very easy to overcook the flesh and hence dry it out.

But poaching (which is at a temperature slightly lower than a simmer) makes it more difficult for you to dry out by ensuring the protein’s structure is not destroyed. It is also a great way to impart flavour into the fish.

Enjoy this heart-warming dish.

PREP TIME: 10 mins

COOK TIME: 15 mins

SERVES: 4 people


2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons capers, dried off

4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

400g tin of cherry tomato, halved

400g canned cannellini beans, rinsed

1 cup white wine (I used dry)

1 teaspoon smokey paprika

6-8 mushrooms, sliced

Juice of half a lemon

600-700g firm white fish (I used gurnard, and cut to fit in pan)

150g broccoli chopped

1 courgette, grated

2 cups fresh baby spinach

3 tablespoons freshly-chopped parsley

Handful rocket for garnish


1.Pour your olive oil into a deep frying pan and heat to a medium-high heat. Cook the capers until they start to pop, turn the heat down a little, then add in your garlic. Cook for a further 2 minutes until the garlic begins to soften, but not brown.

2.Next add in the tomatoes, combine, then add in the cannellini beans, mushrooms, smokey paprika and wine and bring to the boil. Simmer for 3-4 minutes, then add in your broccoli, courgette and spinach and cook for a further 2 -3 minutes.

3.Gently add fish to the tomato mixture. Turn down heat a little so just under a simmer and poach the fish, covered, for 5-6 minutes or until fish is just cooked through.

4.Add in your lemon and taste, and add in salt and pepper as required.

5.Gently and evenly distribute the vegetable mix across four bowls, then place the fish across and pour over tomato liquid. Sprinkle with parsley and small bunch of rocket and serve immediately.