I use cod for this subtly flavoured dish. Small artichokes with stems intact, preserved in oil – available from good Italian delicatessens – are best for this recipe, but the hearts sold in jars are an acceptable substitute. Serve with boiled new potatoes.
1 kg thick cod fillet, skinned
Salt and freshly ground black pepper Plain flour 6 shallots
2 tablespoons olive oil 25g butter
2 cloves garlic, chopped 300ml dry white wine 175ml fish stock 225g oyster mushrooms
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley 6 small artichokes in oil
Small handful basil leaves
Cut the cod into 5cm pieces and remove any bones; dredge with seasoned flour. Peel the shallots, and cut in half, keeping the root intact to hold them in shape. Heat the oil and butter in a deep saute pan and, when the foaming subsides, add thefish and cook until golden all over. Remove to a plate.
Add the shallots to the pan and cook until browned. Add garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes. Pour in the wine and stock, and add the mushrooms, bay leaf and parsley. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes.
Cut artichokes in half. Slice the lemon thinly. Add fish and artichokes to sauce; lay the lemon slices on top. Cover, and cook gently for 10-15 minutes. Shred the basil, and add to the stew just before serving