DAVID WOODS: Roll up for a fresh fish dish

Rye Bay plaice fillet roulade with cheesy dill potato croquettes and saffron mussel velout�
Rye Bay plaice fillet roulade with cheesy dill potato croquettes and saffron mussel velout�

Put plaice on your supper menu this spring, says David Woods, executive head chef of the Sofitel London Gatwick.

We are big on fish here at the Sofitel and all my chefs are competent at cooking any species.

Chef Monica Bance putting the finishing touches to the dish

Chef Monica Bance putting the finishing touches to the dish

So, this week I thought I’d let my senior chef de partie, Monica Bance, share her plaice roulade recipe with you. It’s a fresh, light dish, perfect for spring, and served with cheesy dill croquettes for added crunch.

This dish is currently on our specials menu and is served with a saffron mussel velouté, but Monica has provided a cheat’s version to help you save time.

The plaice takes just a few minutes to prepare and five minutes to cook, so if you’ve done some preparation in advance – see the chef’s tip – this has the potential for being a quick but impressive supper for two, allowing you more free time to enjoy the lighter evenings.

To book a table at La Brasserie, Sofitel’s 2 AA rosette restaurant, call 01293 567070 (select 3 for dining) or email SLG@sofitelgatwick.com. Follow us on Twitter or Facebook. Share your recipes with us on Instagram by tagging @SofitelLondonGA.

David Woods

David Woods

Rye Bay plaice fillet roulade with cheesy dill potato croquettes and saffron mussel velouté

Serves 2

1kg plaice or four plaice fillets

2 tsp finely chopped mixed herbs – parsley dill, thyme and chives

1 tab white wine

Half a lemon

Knob of butter

For the croquette potatoes:

1 large or 2 medium potatoes

1 tab double cream

1 tab grated Parmesan cheese

50g grated cheddar

1 tsp chopped chives

1 tsp chopped dill

1 beaten egg

2 tabs breadcrumbs

1 tab plain flour, seasoned with salt and pepper

1 beaten egg

Vegetable oil for frying

For the saffron velouté:

150ml good quality fish stock

Tiny pinch of saffron

50ml double cream

Knob of butter

Handful of cooked mussels


First, make the potato croquettes: peel the potatoes and cut into chunks. Place in a saucepan with salted water and bring to the boil. Simmer until tender. Mash with double cream, then beat in the Parmesan, cheddar, dill, chives and beaten egg. When cool enough to handle, roll the mixture into balls. Roll the balls first in the seasoned flour, then beaten egg, then the breadcrumbs. Repeat this process if you prefer a thicker crumb. Deep fry the potato croquettes until golden brown.

If the plaice is whole, ask your fishmonger to fillet it into four – or find simple, step-by-step instructions on how to fillet plaice online. Season each fillet with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the mixed herbs. Roll up tightly.

Place the roulades in a baking dish, resting on parchment paper, and sprinkle over the white wine and juice from half a lemon. Add a knob of butter and cover the dish with foil. Bake in a preheated oven, 200oC, 5mins.

To make the velouté, heat the fish stock in a small saucepan, whisk in the double cream, a tiny pinch of saffron, and a knob of butter to make it glossy. Stir in the mussels and heat through. Serve the plaice roulades with the croquettes and drizzle over the saffron mussel velouté.

Chef’s tip

Once they have been rolled in breadcrumbs, the croquettes will keep for up to two days in the fridge so perfect for getting ahead. If the crumb of the croquettes begins to crack while deep frying, lift out with a slotted spoon and finish off in a hot oven, 180C for a few minutes until golden-brown.

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