Chef’s Recipe: Pan-fried halibut with lobster risotto

In every issue of Tees Life, a guest chef brings you the ingredients and method of cooking and serving a recommended dish.

Paul Bussey of the King’s Arms, Great Stainton, describes how to make pan-fried halibut with lobster risotto, to serve four people…

4 portions halibut fillet – 150–180gr per portion; 1 banana shallot, finely chopped; 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped; 1pc native lobster cooked and shelled, and diced; 250gr risotto rice; 100gr butter; 100gr mascarpone; 100gr parmesan grated; 750ml white wine; 2.5ltr white fish stock; 50gr chopped tarragon; 50gr chopped chives; 50gr chopped chervil; 50gr chopped parsley; Salt; 1 kg lobster shells; 2 carrots; 1 leek; 1 onion; 2 sticks celery; 3 cloves garlic; 2 tbsp tomato paste; Bay leaf & thyme.

Method – risotto
• First heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a pan, sweat the shallots and garlic until transparent, seasoning with salt whilst cooking.
• Add the risotto rice and stir thoroughly, continue to sweat the rice until it becomes
• Add the white wine, stir continuously until all dissolved.
• Add the stock in three parts, (keeping 100ml for later) each time making sure that the
first parts have absorbed the stock. The rice should be nearly cooked, slightly al dente.
• Then add the diced lobster to the rice, fold in thoroughly.
• Now add the butter, parmesan and the mascarpone to the rice, continuously stirring
whilst adding the ingredients.
• To finish the risotto, add a pinch of salt if needed, and finally the chopped herbs.

Method – Lobster bisque
• Chop the lobster shells and roast them off until browned.
• In a separate pan, sweat the vegetables until golden brown and then add the tomato paste.
• Cook the vegetables until caramelised.
• Add the roasted shells, and cover with water. Add some tomato trimmings and herbs. Bring to the boil and simmer for 3 hours.
• Pass through a fine sieve.
• To finish the sauce, add 200ml of the lobster stock to 200ml of double cream, bring to the boil and reduce by half, add salt to taste.

Method – halibut
• Pan fry the halibut fillets skin-side down first, (which will be your presentation side) using a hot non-stick frying pan with 2 tbsp of olive oil, fry until golden brown, turn the fish over and add 100ml of white fish stock to the pan and a knob of butter.
• When the fish is cooked, take it out of the pan, and rest on a tray. Heat the butter and stock gently, and add some chopped soft herbs to the liquor, then glaze the halibut fillet with the herb, butter and stock emulsion.
• Finally, place the fish on top of the finished risotto and serve with the lobster bisque.