For the mimosa eggs garnish in this week's recipe you will need fresh free-range or organic eggs, as the flavour is crucial
The eggs can be prepared in a variety of ways but this is my favourite – essentially, hard-boiled eggs with the yolk and white chopped together and mixed with a light vinaigrette and herbs. The mixture is best served slightly warm or at room temperature. Accompanying the eggs are fillets of john dory, pan-fried until golden brown and served with rich and sweet braised leeks.
If you can't buy john dory then cod, halibut or turbot are good alternatives. The eggs, served on their own with a crisp salad and croutons, also make a fantastic starter.
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ROASTED JOHN DORY GARNISHED WITH MIMOSA EGGS AND SERVED WITH BRAISED LEEKS AND HAZELNUT SPATZELLE
BRAISED WHOLE LEEKS
4 trimmed and washed leeks, about 20cm long
50g unsalted butter
100ml white wine
350ml fresh chicken stock
1 small bunch of thyme
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and halved
Cut the leeks in half lengthways then melt the butter in a large pan and cook the leeks with a pinch of salt on a medium to high heat until golden brown.
Add the wine and boil it rapidly to reduce it by two-thirds then add the stock, thyme and garlic. Bring the stock to the boil and cook until the liquid has reduced by half.
Set the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Transfer the pan to the oven and continue to braise until the leeks are tender and the stock has reduced to a glaze. When cooked, leave the leeks to cool then store in the reduced stock until ready to serve.
MIMOSA EGGS GARNISH
4 eggs, hard boiled for 10 minutes and shelled
1tbsp each of finely chopped parsley, chervil and chives
1tbsp white wine vinegar
1tsp dijon mustard
3-4tbsp peanut or sunflower oil
1 small shallot, peeled and finely diced
Salt and pepper
Separate the egg yolks from the whites and push the yolks through a sieve into a small bowl. Chop the whites finely then add to the yolks along with the herbs. Use a small whisk to mix the vinegar, mustard and oil in a bowl, seasoning with a little salt and fresh ground white pepper.
Add the shallot and the dressing to the eggs and herbs, mix well then set aside.
50g plain flour
5 whole eggs
3 egg yolks
A small pinch of nutmeg
A pinch of salt
Place all the ingredients in a large bowl and beat well to form a smooth paste. Spoon a little of the mix into a small colander, forcing it through with the back of a spoon into a pan of salted boiling water to make pieces about 1cm long.
Cook the spatzelle for 2 minutes then transfer to ice-cold water to chill. Drain the spatzelle once they are all cooked and place in a bowl until ready to reheat.
ROASTED JOHN DORY
600g skinless fillets of john dory
Flour, for dusting the fish
Warm a large, non-stick saute pan containing 3-4tbsp cooking oil. When you can feel a good heat rising from the pan, gently place the fish fillets into the oil. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the fish. When golden and cooked through remove the fillets from the pan and place them on kitchen paper.
40g peeled chopped hazelnuts
4tbsp hazelnut oil
Arrange the warm leeks on hot plates. Warm the spatzelle in a little butter then add the chopped hazelnuts and hazelnut oil and mix thoroughly.
Place a couple of spoonfuls of spatzelle on top of the leeks, followed by a piece or two of john dory, then finish with a few spoonfuls of the mimosa eggs.
2010 Ribeiro, Casal De Arman, Spain, Alliance Wines, £13.95
A fruity, floral wine from north-west Spain with notes of white peach and green apple.
The Honours, 58a North Castle Street, Edinburgh. Visit www.thehonours.co.uk or call 0131 220 2513.