Marinated mackerel with green olive & celery dressing
- Preparation and cooking time
- plus 1 hr pickling and overnight marinating
- Serves 4
Mackerel is undoubtedly a British superfood but it can leave your kitchen full of pungent aromas. You can avoid this by lightly pickling instead of cooking it, like in this fresh-tasting recipe
- 2 mackerel , filleted and pin bones removed
- ½ tsp fennel seeds , toasted
- 150ml olive oil
- 3 banana shallots , sliced into rings
- 1 ½ tbsp golden caster sugar
- juice ½ lemon
- 150ml red wine vinegar
- 10 green olives , pitted and halved
- 2 celery sticks , thinly sliced at an angle
- 1 tsp chopped celery leaves
- lemon wedges, to serve
- crème fraîche , to serve (optional)
- STEP 1
Lay the mackerel fillets, skinside down, in a shallow dish, then sprinkle with the fennel seeds and 1 1/2 tbsp flaky salt, making sure you cover the fish evenly. Cover with cling film and put in the fridge for 1 hr, then remove, wash off the salt and fennel seeds, and pat the fish dry with kitchen paper.
- STEP 2
Return the fish to the shallow dish, skin-side up, pour over the olive oil and scatter over the shallots. Put the sugar, lemon juice and vinegar in a small saucepan and bring to the boil, then pour the hot liquid over the fish. Leave to cool, cover in cling film and put in the fridge to marinate overnight.
- STEP 3
The next day, remove the fish from the fridge 1 hr before serving to bring it to room temperature, then transfer to a serving plate. Stir in the olives, celery and celery leaves. Leave for a few mins, then serve with lemon wedges and a couple of spoonfuls of crème fraîche.
As an oily fish, mackerel spoils quickly. Try to buy it from a fishmonger on the day you are going to use it. Look for clear, bright eyes, firm bodies and pink or bright-red gills. Avoid mackerel with dull, wrinkled skin.