King George Whiting Beccafico

From Guy Grossi – Grossi Restaurants

Serves 6

This fish is light and delicate in flavor and texture.  The flesh is often referred to as ‘sweet’ because of its suppleness. Whiting is a delicious fish but can sometimes be frustrating to cook due to its many small bones. When purchasing the whiting it is a good idea to ask the fish monger to pin bone the fish to remove these.

The whiting is drizzled with some olive oil to help keep it moist but it is important not to overcook it. This will make the flesh dry and flaky and quite unpleasant.

This is not a very difficult dish to prepare and will look wonderful on the plate for a spring time gathering.  I have matched it here with some fresh spring peas but it can even be served on its own or with a light salad.


250gm stale bread loaf

200ml olive oil

1 garlic clove chopped

1 chilli chopped

1 lemon

50gm coriander chopped

200gm pine nuts

200gm sultanas

Cut the crust off the bread and blend in a food processor.

Heat a large pan with the olive oil and fry the breadcrumbs until golden and crispy, add the garlic, chilli, zest of lemon, coriander, pine nuts and sultanas and mix in sautéing for a few minutes finish off by mixing in the juice of the lemon. Let cool.

Crushed peas

50ml olive oil

500gm peas

175gm onions brunoise

5gm garlic chopped

1gm mint chopped

15gm unsalted butter

150ml stock

Sea salt

Cracked black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a pan then add the onions and garlic, sauté without colour for a few minutes until onions are translucent, add the peas, mint and butter and mix in deglaze with stock season and cook until most of the liquid has gone.

Place in food processor and pulse once or twice until peas have a crushed appearance NOT puree or mashed appearance.

King George Whiting

18 King George Whiting fillet

50ml olive oil

Sea salt

Cracked black pepper

2 lemons

Pre heat oven to 180c;

Skin and pin bone the whiting fillets.

Place the fillets on a chopping board skin side up season, and sprinkle the crumbs over the fillets, from the tail end roll up keeping as much of the crumbs on the fillets, place on a tray lined with grease proof paper on their side and top up with some extra crumbs.

Drizzle with some olive oil and bake in the oven for 4 to 5 minutes.

Serve with crushed peas and a wedge of lemon.

Variation: similar versions of this recipe use sardines which is somewhat more traditional.

Recipes collected and donated by the SEA LIFE Conservation Fund.