Fish of the month

Pan fried mackerel fillets, hot pickled slaw and fried capers

The ratings range for this species is shown above, however we recommend you only source fish rated 1-3 on the Good Fish Guide for this recipe. Click to view all sustainability ratings for this fish
Picture of Pan fried mackerel fillets, hot pickled slaw and fried capers
Cooking time   30
Fish type   Oily fish
Serves   2


4 mackerel fillets
100 ml rice wine or white wine vinegar
25 ml water
half tsp dashi granules (optional)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
50 g carrot, finely sliced
25g shallot, finely sliced
2 juniper berries
2 black peppercorns
1 star anise
A sprig of thyme
Small pinch of chilli
Knob of butter
1 tsp capers
A few springs of chervil
Salt to taste


Salt the flesh side of the mackerel and leave for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, create the pickling liquid by combining the vinegar, water and dashi granules in a pan and warm gently over a low heat. Wash the salt off the mackerel and lay it on a plate, skin side up and pour over the pickling liquid, so that it covers the flesh side but does not completely submerge the fillets. Leave to pickle for 10 minutes, then remove from the pickling liquid and pat dry, reserving the liquid. Heat the vegetable oil in a pan and fry the capers until crispy, leave to dry on kitchen paper. For the slaw, cut the carrot and shallot into thin strips and place in a pan with the juniper berries, peppercorns, star anise, thyme, chilli and a good pinch of salt. Pour the reserved pickling liquid over the slaw, bring to the boil and take off the heat.


Take the mackerel fillets and fry them skin side down on a moderate heat for 1 - 2 minutes, add a knob of butter to finish. Once cooked assemble with some of the warm pickled slaw, the fillets of mackerel, capers and a few sprigs of chervil. Deglaze the pan with some of the pickling liquor, reduce briefly, and use to sauce the plate.