Gordon cooks a one-pan dish for two that has all the flavours of the sun-drenched south of France
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I salt the cod fillets first as it firms up the soft flesh, making it easier to cook and intensifying its flavour. In my kitchens we salt whole fillets overnight, but even if you do it for just 10 minutes beforehand it will make a difference. Bear in mind that the fish won’t need any extra seasoning.
Make sure you use really ripe, juicy tomatoes that feel plump and are aromatic – it will make all the difference to the finished dish. It’s good to buy tomatoes on the vine, but don’t be fooled by their aroma – it’s the vine that has the fantastic aroma, even when it’s attached to the most tasteless tomatoes.
I now serve only sustainable cod in my restaurants and advise you to use only sustainably caught and responsibly farmed fish, too. You can get fantastic farmed Atlantic cod from most supermarkets or look for MSC - approved line-caught cod. Pollack or farmed halibut also make good sustainable alternatives to cod.
I also serve the vegetables and fennel salad with other fillets of Mediterranean fish, such as red mullet, tuna or sea bass, but pan-fry the fish separately once the vegetables are ready.