It’s said that this classic French dish is what created Julia Child’s life long passion for French cuisine.
It is very good and it\’s flawless in its simplicity and attention to detail. It uses copious amounts of clarified butter and is finished with brown butter. Add some lemon juice, salt, pepper and fresh parsley and there you have it. As always, I suggest you prepare the classic dish and taste it before you start to change it around.
I wanted to try and create a slightly healthier version utilizing a plant based butter and EVOO. I really didn’t know if it would work, but I have to say I was very happy with the results.
As I had some really lovely capers on hand, I added those, which made this more of a fish piccata, but cooking is about experimenting.
Since there are so few ingredients, it’s very important to use the freshest you can find. If you can’t find Dover sole, which can be tough then a good substitute is Pacific Dover sole. It’s not actually sole, not from Dover, obviously, but a flounder.
1 lb Sole filets
Flour for dusting the filets
Salt and Black or White Pepper
6 Tbsp Earth Balance or similar plant based butter. Mykonos vegan butter would work well here. Keep 2 Tbsp aside to finish the sauce.
2 Tbsp EVOO
Juice of one Lemon
3 Tbsp Capers, optional
Freshly chopped Parsley
Preheat you over to its lowest setting. As you are going to cook the filets in batches, the oven will keep them warm.
Begin by seasoning your flour with salt and pepper. Then season your filets, knocking off any excess flour.
Heat your sauté pan over medium/ high heat add in 1/2 of the butter (2 Tbsp) and 1/2 of EVOO and wait until the butter is sizzling and gently place in half of the filets, without crowding them.
Sauté until golden brown and flip over. Usually it’s about 2-3 minutes per side depending on thickness. Remove from the pan with your fish spatula and on a warm plate and into the oven.
Then same procedure with the rest of the filets. And into the oven.
Add your retained 2 Tbsp of butter to the sauté pan, add your capers, chopped parsley and lemon juice and reduce for maybe 1 minute. Pour this sauce over your warm filets and serve immediately.
Note: if you would like a more traditional dish, then omit the capers and just add your retained 2 tablespoons of butter and lemon juice to the pan and reduce. Then pour the sauce over the filets and sprinkle the fresh parsley on the top.