Pan Fried Atlantic Cod, Smoked Garlic Celeriac Puree, Thyme Roasted Beetroot and Carrots and Potato and Leek Cakes

As a life long meat eater, it can happen that the Sunday roast can become all to focussed on the meat as the centrepiece to the meal.

As a life long meat eater, it can happen that the Sunday roast can become all to focussed on the meat as the centrepiece to the meal.

Lately I’ve been challenging myself to think differently about the end of week feast and try to focus less on the meat, and look more to vegetables and fish as the showpieces on my dish.

The fish served here was super fresh!  Purchased only the day before from Peter Shanahan’s Fresh Fish Seafood Deli in Clonakilty, this was a super piece of Atlantic Cod, chunky and tasting beautiful!  When fish is this good quality and this fresh, there is nothing much to do to it except pan fry it simply and well.  The smoked garlic and celeriac puree is a nice flavourful sauce that is really simple to put together and the leek and potato cakes can be made in advance or in batches and popped in the fridge or freezer ready for future meals.  Generous helpings of milk and butter give the dish a luxurious finish, essential for a fulfilling alternative Sunday lunch!

Ingredients (serves 2):

For the Potato and Leek Cakes:

  • 2-3 large baking potatoes (or equivalent)
  • 3 leeks, cleaned, peeled, quartered and finely chopped
  • 2 celery sticks (and leaves) cleaned, halved and finely chopped
  • ½ white onion, finely diced
  • Handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large cod fillets
  • 1 medium celeriac (milk, bay leaf, whole black peppercorns and 2 smoked garlic cloves)
  • 1 large beetroot, peeled and sliced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and quartered lengthways
  • Fresh thyme, sea salt and black pepper


Turn the oven to 200 degs celcius for the root veg.

For the Potato and Leek Cakes:

  • Peel the potatoes and chop into quarters or sixths depending on the size of the spuds, so that they are all the same size and will cook quickly. Cook in a pan of salted boiling water.
  • Into a frying pan with a tablespoon of olive oil, add the leek, celery, onion and parsley and fry gently over a low to medium heat.
  • Meanwhile prepare the celeriac by taking off the outside skin, chopping off the root and cutting into small cubes. Place in a sauce pan with a enough milk to cover it, 150ml of water, 2 bay leaves (dry or fresh), 1tp of black peppercorns, 2 cloves of smoked garlic and some parsley stalks.
  • Bring gently to the boil and then turn the heat down and simmer until softened and cooked. Take out the bay leaves and take out the celeriac using a slotted spoon and place in a food processor.
  • Add the liquid mixture a little at a time until the celeriac puree blitzes down to a smooth texture but not too liquid.
  • Empty the puree back in the empty saucepan and place back on the hob ready to reheat before serving.
  • When the potatoes are cooked, drain and let air dry for a few minutes, then add some butter and mash well. Add the cooked leek mix and loads of freshly ground black pepper and mix together using a wooden spoon.
  • Shape into patties a couple of cm’s thick and about the size of the palm of your hand. Set aside until ready to pan fry off.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the root veg, toss in a little rapeseed oil, salt, pepper and fresh thyme leaves. Place on a lined baking tray and pop in the oven to roast off for apx 20 minutes, turning once.
  • Season the fish fillets with sea salt and black pepper. Heat a frying pan to medium high heat and when the oil is hot and simmering, add the fish skin side down to cook until ¾ cooked through and the skin is crispy.
  • In another frying pan, add a small amount of olive oil and place the potato and leek cakes in the pan.
  • Take the carrots and beetroot out of the oven and drain off any excess oil on kitchen paper.
  • Turn the fish and turn the cakes. When cooked, place onto kitchen towel to drain also.
  • Warm two plates, and serve up immediately…and Enjoy!

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