ROASTED COD WITH A WALNUT, LEMON, AND PARMESAN CRUST
This dish makes a lovely fuss-free supper and is very quick to make. One large fillet makes an impressive centerpiece, but you can just as well use 4 separate fillets of about 6 ounces each. For a change from cod, try haddock, hake, or any other meaty whitefish.
First make the walnut, lemon, and Parmesan crust. Chop the butter into small cubes and put into a food processor. Add the walnuts, breadcrumbs, lemon zest, two-thirds of the Parmesan, and some salt and pepper, then process everything until the mixture binds together.
Check the cod for pin bones, removing any you find with a pair of tweezers (see page 54, step 6). Lay the fillet on a lightly oiled nonstick roasting pan, skin side down, and season with salt and pepper. Spread the crust mixture in an even layer over the top of the fish. Chill for 20 minutes until the crust feels firm.
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the top of the crust, then roast the cod for 20–25 minutes until the crust turns golden and crisp and the fish is just cooked.
Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Pour the stock into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook over high heat for about 10 minutes until reduced by two-thirds. Off the heat, whisk the crème fraîche into the reduced stock. Return to low heat and simmer for 5–10 minutes until you have the consistency of a light cream.
Add the capers and parsley just before serving and adjust the seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the cod to a serving platter and pour over the sauce. Serve with lemon wedges on the side.