pan-fried sea trout with white beans, shaved fennel and soft herbs

Serves 4 people

150g dried white beans (we use Coco de Paimpol)
2 bulbs of fennel, fronds reserved Juice of 1/2 lemon
7 tbsp fruity olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 sprig of thyme
2 bay leaves
500ml fish stock
2 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp chopped dill
100ml double cream
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2 plum tomatoes, peeled, deseeded and diced
2 tbsp chopped tarragon
2 tbsp chopped chervil
4 x 150g sea trout fillets, scaled and pin-boned
1 tbsp semolina
Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

01 Soak the beans overnight in a large bowl of cold water. The next day, drain and cook in fresh water until tender.

02 Trim and cut 1 fennel bulb into thin slivers, then soak in a bowl of water with the lemon juice. Finely dice the other fennel bulb. Heat 2 tbsp of the olive oil in a large pan and add the diced fennel and onion, garlic, thyme and bay leaves. Cook over a low heat until the onion is soft and translucent.

03 Drain the beans and add them to the pan. Cover with fish stock by a good 2cm. Cover with a cartouche (disc of baking parchment) and simmer over a very low heat until the beans are completely soft.

04 Meanwhile, mix the balsamic vinegar with 4 tbsp of the olive oil. Drain the shaved fennel, pat dry with kitchen paper and add to the dressing with the dill. Mix well and leave to macerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.

05 Drain the beans, reserve the stock and remove the herbs. Set the beans aside and keep warm.

06 Return the fish stock to the pan and cook until reduced by half. Add the cream, butter and diced tomatoes and cook over a medium heat until the sauce thickens and comes together. Return the beans to the pan with the tarragon and chervil, then check the seasoning and keep everything warm while you cook the fish.

07 Make three slashes in the skin of each sea trout fillet. Rub with olive oil, season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper and dust with semolina. Put the fillets skin side down in a hot, dry heavy-based frying pan or skillet over a medium-high heat and sear for 3-4 minutes. Turn over, reduce the heat to low and cook for a further 3 minutes until cooked.

08 To serve, spoon the beans onto a plate. Sit the trout on top, pile the shaved fennel on top of the fish with the-reserved fronds and drizzle a little olive oil over the top.