Steamed fish, Puy lentils and salsa verde

Ideal for a special occasion, this surprisingly easy and quick recipe looks and tastes like a restaurant dish. It needs a range of ingredients, but not a lot of preparation. If you want a more filling dish, serve with soft or mashed potato.

Puy lentils are key to the flavour, but you can prepare them the night before. This usually means washing and draining them, then simmering in water for about 20 minutes. Adding a bay leaf and some finely chopped onion adds to the flavour.

Preparation time:10 minutes (if cooking the lentils from dry, add 20 minutes)


Cooking time:5 - 10 minutes

Some supermarkets now provide ready-to-use Puy lentils in packets, which saves time and fuss.

  • Ingredients
    • 4 x 150g firm, white fish fillets (such as cod or haddock)
    • 200g Puy lentils, washed and drained (or 400g ready-to-use Puy lentils)


    For the salsa

    • 2 anchovy fillets (optional)
    • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 bunch of flat-leaf parsley (about 40g)
    • 6 basil leaves
    • 20 mint leaves
    • 1 small garlic clove, peeled
    • 1 tbsp capers, rinsed and drained
    • ½ tbsp Dijon mustard
    • ½ tbsp fresh lemon juice
    • 1 gherkin
    • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • Salt and pepper
  • Method
    1. Add the pre-cooked lentils to a pan and season with salt and pepper. For easier swallowing, mash the lentils. Add the olive oil, cover and heat gently.
    2. Blend all the salsa ingredients (chop if necessary).
    3. Ensure the fish is bone free and steam for five minutes. If you don’t have a steamer, pour hot water in a large frying pan to surround an upside down, flat-bottomed ramekin (or similar heat-proof small dish). Place the fish on a plate, and rest the plate on the dish. Cover and steam for five minutes. Alternately, poach the fish in a little water.
    4. The fish should be very tender and soft, but purée if needed – it works well with a splash of lemon juice or vegetable stock.
    5. Layer a portion of lentils on each serving plate, top with a piece of fish and drizzle over some of the salsa.