‘There’s a really good supply of hake in the summer off the Cornish coast,’ says Tom Brown, head chef of Outlaw’s at the St Enodoc Hotel, Rock. ‘Ask your fishmonger to get hold of some – a lot of it goes abroad. Make sure it’s super fresh and the fillets are firm. If not it can be very flaky and break up easily when cooking.’

Serves 4

Smoked streaky bacon  6 rashers
Hazelnut pieces 50g, chopped
English mustard ½ tsp
Sweet vinegar 2 tbsp
Lemon juice ½ tbsp
Cold water 1 tbsp
Garlic clove 1 small,  finely diced
Shallot ½, finely diced
Light rapeseed oil 200ml
Hake 4 x 150g fillet portions, with skin on
Sea salt for seasoning
Asparagus 12 spears
Flat leaf parsley 10 leaves

  1. Bake the bacon at 180°c/gas 4 for 15 minutes or until crisp. Allow to cool, then chop roughly.
  2. Toast the hazelnuts in the oven at 180°c/gas 4 for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  3. To make the dressing, mix the mustard, sweet vinegar, lemon juice, water, garlic and shallot in a bowl with a whisk. Gradually add the oil while whisking until all of the oil is incorporated.
  4. Season with salt and cook the hake portions in a medium to hot pan with a small amount of oil skin side down for 6 minutes, then turn the portions over and remove the pan from the heat. Leave the hake in the pan for a further 2 minutes.
  5. Prepare the asparagus by removing the woody part of the stalk and cooking for 2 minutes in boiling salted water. Once cooked, drain and place 3 spears on each plate.
  6. Add the chopped bacon to the dressing along with the finely sliced parsley. Pour the dressing over the asparagus.
  7. Place the hake portions on top of the asparagus and dressing and serve.
Tom Brown
Tom Brown