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Seafood Recipes: Sole and Parma Parcels Recipe

Seafood Recipes: Sole and Parma Parcels Recipe

This is a delicious dish, combining the flavours of fish and Parma ham. Ask the fishmonger to skin the sole and remove 2 double fillets from each, and ask for the skin and bones to make the fish stock.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Main Courses, Seafood
Servings 4


  • 2 Dover sole, about 1 1/2 lb (750g) each, skinned and filleted
  • 8 oz (250 g) coley fillets, skinned and boned
  • 1/2 pint (300 ml ) water
  • 4 parsley stalks
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 4 oz (125 g) Parma ham
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 4 tablespoons soured cream
  • Few watercress sprigs, to garnish
  • 5 oz (150 g) butter, softened
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • Few drops of lemon juice


  • Put the skin and bones from the sole in a saucepan with the coley, water, parsley stalks and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to the boil and simmer for 12—15 minutes, then strain, reserving the coley. Return the stock to the rinsed pan and boil rapidly until reduced to 6 tablespoons. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  • Put the coley into a food processor or blender and work until smooth. Cut 8 long strips of Parma ham and set aside for tying the parcels. Shred the remaining ham and mix with the coley, chopped parsley and salt and pepper to taste to make the filling.
  • Place the 4 sole fillets, skinned side up, on a board. Divide the filling equally among them, placing it in the centre. Fold over the ends of each fillet to enclose the filling. Use 2 strips of ham to tie each fillet like a parcel and secure with wooden cocktail sticks. Place the fillets in a single layer in an ovenproof dish lined with a large sheet of foil. Mix 4 tablespoons of the reduced stock with the soured cream and pour over the fish. Place the dish in a preheated oven, 190°C (375°F), Gas Mark 5, and bake for 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the shallot butter. Melt 25 g/1 oz of the butter in a saucepan, add the shallots and fry gently for 5 minutes without brown­ing. Beat into the remaining butter with the parsley, lemon juice, the remaining reduced stock and salt and pepper to taste. Shape into a cylinder, chill in the refrigerator until firm, then cut into 4 slices.
  • To serve, pour a little of the sauce on to each plate, place the fish parcels topped with a slice of shallot butter on top and garnish with watercress.
Keyword Fish recipes