MANGETOUT, those summer flat podded peas, are a seasonal favourite in my kitchen so I try to incorporate them as much as possible into the restaurant menu.

Mangetout are eaten whole while the peas within are still very small – hence the French name, which means ‘eat everything’. Crisp and sweet, they can be served raw, or lightly steamed, boiled or stir-fried.

Mangetout should be eaten as soon as possible after picking as their freshness deteriorates quickly. They should be crisp and bright green and require minimal cooking – overcooking them will deplete their flavour, texture and nutritional value. For this reason they’re often used in salads and stir fries where minimal or no cooking is involved.

Because of their delicate, sweet flavour mangetout are also often served with fish and seafood. I like to pair mangetout with another seasonal favourite of mine; seabass.

This week’s recipe is a lovely fresh and light dish that’s packed full of flavour. Steaming the fish and vegetables together means minimal effort in the kitchen but maximum flavour on the plate.

The added zing of the ginger and the subtle nuttiness of the sesame turns this into a really special dish. Serve with a few boiled potatoes or some fluffy rice for a delicious summer supper.



(serves 2)

2 fillets of seabass (approx. 140g)

5cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled

2 spring onions, finely sliced

2 Pak choi, quartered

25g of mangetout

1-2 tsp sesame oil

Salt & pepper

Pre-heat the oven to 180c/350F/Gas 4

Using a sharp knife, carefully score the skin of the seabass four to five times on the diagonal.

Cut two large pieces of foil and fold each in half to create a double thickness – they should be big enough to create a loose parcel around the fish.

Rinse the pak choi and mangetout in cold water and divide between the two foil sheets (don’t dry the vegetables as the water will help to create the steam).

Slice the ginger into very thin matchsticks and place on top of the vegetables along with the spring onions. Sit the fillets of seabass on top, drizzle with a little sesame oil and season well with salt and pepper.

Bring the sides of the foil up around the fish and vegetables and seal the edges together at the top so that no steam can escape. The parcel should have enough room inside to allow the steam to circulate and shouldn’t be tightly wrapped.

Place in the oven for 15 minutes then remove from the foil and serve immediately with some boiled rice.

You can also cook the fish in a bamboo steamer if preferred.