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sole walewska

Sole Walewska: a new level of seafood decadence

Dover sole, truffles, langoustine and saffron in one dish... What more could you possibly want?
Course Main
Cuisine French
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 2
Author Johan Johansen

Ingredients

For Sole Walewska:

  • Two fillets of Dover Sole
  • Four langoustine tails shell on
  • 10 grams of truffles thinly sliced
  • Two tablespoons of Noily Prat or dry Vermouth

For sauce:

  • 150 milliliters of heavy cream
  • 200 milliliters of fish stock
  • One glass of good white wine
  • Two large shallots finely minced
  • One clove of garlic smashed
  • One carrot diced
  • One leak diced
  • One stalk of celery diced
  • One bay leaf
  • A few sprigs of parsley
  • A generous pinch of Saffron
  • 10 grams of truffles very finely chopped
  • 75 grams of Gruyere cheese freshly grated

Instructions

Opening movements:

  1. Peel and de-vein the langoustine tails, reserve shells
  2. Cover langoustine tails and refrigerate till needed
  3. Grab a small oven-proof dish, large enough to hold two fillets of sole
  4. Sprinkle bottom of dish with chopped shallots.
  5. Place two fillets of Dover Sole on top of shallots, season generously with salt and pepper, add generous slices of truffle to each fillet, and fold fillets in half over truffles.
  6. Cover dish with cling film and refrigerate till needed.
  7. Preheat oven to 180C

Make sauce:

  1. Heat a splash of oil in heavy bottom pot over high heat
  2. When oil is nearly smoking hot, add langoustine shells, stir vigorously and reduce heat to medium.
  3. After a few minutes, when shells are thoroughly heated through and heat has reduced, add shallots, carrot, leak, celery and garlic, and fry for a minute or two.
  4. Add fish stock, white wine and a splash of water. Bring pot to a simmer and simmer for roughly thirty minutes, skimming any foam that rises to the top.
  5. After thirty minutes, strain sauce base into a suitable container, add saffron and set aside.
  6. Wash and wipe out the pot, return to heat, add two tablespoons of butter and let melt.
  7. When butter is melted, add two tablespoons of flour and fry for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently. What you have here is a roux and it will thicken any liquid added to it.
  8. Grab your container of sauce base and stir a few tablespoons into the roux. It will hiss and splatter and turn to a paste-like consistency, keep stirring.
  9. Keep slowly whisking and adding liquid to the roux until you have a smooth, thickened sauce. The sauce will continue to thicken until it comes to a simmer at which point it will be at its thickest.
  10. When sauce simmers, stir in 150 milliliters of heavy cream and ten grams of finely chopped truffle.
  11. Simmer for a minute or so and slowly stir in cheese, mix till cheese is melted and thoroughly integrated.
  12. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Keep warm on a back burner over low heat.

Prepare fish/langoustine:

  1. Heat a few tablespoons of oil in a heavy bottom pan over medium-high heat
  2. Remove dish with sole fillets from fridge, sprinkle with Noily Prat and slide into 180C oven for 5-7 minutes. Check for doneness after five minutes and continue cooking if necessary.
  3. While fish is cooking give langoustines a quick stir fry in the hot pan, a minute or so per side.
  4. Add a generous shot of Cognac to pan, toss quickly then evacuate langoustines from the heat, cover and let rest.
  5. After 5-7minutes of total cooking evacuate soles from the oven, they should be firm but flaky and soft to the touch. Be careful not to overcook.
  6. Strain juices from the fish into the sauce along with any accumulated juices from the rested langoustine tails.

To plate:

  1. Carefully place sole fillets on plates, topping them with more slices of truffle and the lobster tails, add desired sides and garnishes then generously add sauce. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

If Dover sole is not available, or too expensive, other kinds of sole may be used. Talk to your fishmonger, he'll know what to use. Instead of fresh truffles, preserved truffles may be used, but don't settle for just truffle oil. You'll want the extra oomph and decadence for this presentation.