Smoked haddock with lemon-and-dill lentils
According to Sea Harvest the fish specie Haddock (Melanogrammus aegle nus) is a saltwater fish, caught in the North Atlantic Ocean and found in European and American homes. “Haddock” in South Africa, however, is a traditional name for naturally dyed, brined and smoked Cape Hake. The story dates back to the 1960’s, when true cold smoked Haddock was imported. As import prices rose, local producers found that Hake produced a similar product when smoked, and the name was born.
The lemon and dill gives a beautiful flavour to the dish and goes exceptionally well with the smokiness of the fish.
400 grams smoked haddock fillets
1/2 cup milk
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely chopped
200 grams green lentils
1 cube vegetable stock
500 millilitre boiling water
¼ cup crème fraîche
2 tablespoons dill, finely chopped
zest 1 lemon
100 grams baby spinach
Prepare all your ingredients.
Heat a saucepan over medium heat, add the oil and fry the onion, carrot and celery for 10 minutes or the onion is soft. Tip the lentils into the pan and stir for another 2 minutes. Add the stock and bring it to the boil. Give it a good stir, then reduce the heat and simmer, covered for 15-20 minutes. Add a bit of water if needed.
Meanwhile, add the fish to a large sauce pan, pour in a bit of milk; slowly steam-cook the fish, covered, for 10 minutes or until the fish flakes easily.
In a small bowl, mix the crème fraîche, dill and the lemon zest together, adding a little seasoning.
When the lentils are cooked, stir in the spinach until the leaves are barely wilted, then stir in the crème fraîche mixture. Divide between serving plates and top with the haddock.