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Marinated And Seared Mackerel with Aubergine

For this recipe I'm using the much underrated mackerel, Mackerel is a fantastically versatile fish I think, Able to be quite delicate one moment, and yet take on some really strong flavours in another,

It is quite a summery dish I suppose, dare I say Mediterranean in flavour? With, Aubergine, Tomato, Basil Etc

As I've said, I'm using mackerel, But, Mullet, Sea bass, Bream, Salmon will work equally as well

I like to use a blow torch to lightly sear and cook the mackerel fillets rather than pan frying, This gives a great colour, texture and smoky flavour, but you can pan fry or cook under a hot grill if you prefer

There are quite a few elements to this recipe, but don't let that put you off!!! It'll be well worth the effort

This recipe will serve 4 people as a starter or a light lunch

Prep time 1 hour

Cooking time 30 minutes

+ extra time for marinating

Shopping List

8 mackerel fillets, pin boned

3 medium size aubergines

6 shallots, peeled and very finely diced

A small bunch of fresh thyme

A small bunch of fresh basil

A small bunch of fresh coriander

400ml of olive oil

There are quite a few elements to this recipe, but don't let that put you off!!! It'll be well worth the effort

Confit tomato recipe

500g of heritage cherry tomatoes, cut in halves

6 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced

A handful of fresh thyme leaves

200ml of olive oil

A good pinch of salt

A good pinch of sugar

Method for confit tomatoes

1. Heat the oven to 95c

2. Place a piece of greaseproof on a baking tray

3. Carefully mix all the ingredients together

4. Evenly place the tomatoes onto the baking sheet, Place in the oven for about 2 1/2 hours


  1. Marinate 4 of the mackerel fillets, place a layer of the marinade on a baking sheet, lay the mackerel fillets on top, then spread another layer of marinade over the top of the mackerel fillets and place in the fridge for 6 hours, After 6 hours, wash of the marinade in cold water and dry well, set aside in the fridge

2. Carefully cut the skin from the aubergines, cut half of the aubergine flesh into dice, Lightly fry with a little olive oil for 5 minutes, now add half of the chopped shallots and half the fresh thyme and cook for another 5 minutes, season well, now blend this mixture in a food processor until silky smooth, leave to cool

3. Now cut the remaining aubergine into fine dice, lightly fry with a little olive oil and the remaining shallots, thyme and seasoning, just enough to soften without too much colour

4. Remove the skin from the 4 marinated mackerel fillets and dice finely, mix with the diced aubergine mixture and some of the tomato confit, carefully mix in half of the finely chopped herbs an 2 tablespoons of the aubergine puree mixture

5. Heat a non stick frying pan with a little olive oil and cook the remaining mackerel fillets skin side down for 2 minutes, then turn the mackerel fillets over and cook for a further 30 seconds

6. Now to plate up, place a nice quenelle of the marinade mackerel mixture onto each plate, place a small amount of the aubergine mixture onto each plate and give it a swoosh!!!, place some of the confit tomato around each plates, sit the pan fried mackerel onto each plate, finish each plate with the remaining herbs, a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon and serve

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