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Author Notes: This elegant dinner party dish was invented by a model of a nineteenth-century Parisian chef named Adolphe Dugléré. According to Larousse Gastronomique, he studied under Carême, ran the kitchens for the Rothschild family, and, at owned a famous Paris restaurant called Cafe Anglais. His eponymous fish dish, as all the best French ones do, starts with a very boring list of ingredients: sole fillets, flour, butter, fish stock, white wine, some token spices in drearily small quantities. Paula Wolfert took a bite in her French cooking class in 1958, she decided to drop out of college to become a chef. —Emily Kaiser Thelin
Serves 4 to 6
- 6 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons unsalted butter (90 g total), plus more for greasing
- 3 Roma tomatoes (about 9 ounces | 255 g total), halved lengthwise and seeded
- 6 four-ounce/115g skinless sole (Dover, petrale, or grey) or flounder fillets
- flaky sea salt
- cayenne pepper
- 6 black peppercorns
- 3 bay leaves, halved
- 1 thin yellow onion slice, separated into 6 strands
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) dry white wine
- 3 tablespoons (25g) all-purpose flour
- 1 cup (240ml) fish stock
- 1/4 cup (60ml) heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter a shallow broiler-safe baking dish 10 to 12 inches (25 to 30 cm) in diameter. Line the bottom with parchment paper and lightly butter the parchment.
- Using the large holes of a box grater, and with the cut side against the grater, grate the tomato halves and discard the skins. Set aside.
- Arrange the sole fillets on a work surface and pat dry. Sprinkle each fillet with a pinch or two of salt and cayenne pepper, then top each fillet with 1/2 teaspoons of the butter, 1 peppercorn, and 1 bay leaf half. Starting from a narrow end, roll up each fillet into a snug cylinder and place, seam side down, in the prepared baking dish. Top each fillet with 1 onion strand. Pour the white wine into the dish.
- Poach the fish in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and spoon out all but about 1 tablespoon of the wine from the dish. Set the fish aside in the dish and keep warm. Position an oven rack 7 inches (17.5 cm) from the heating element and preheat the broiler.
- In a small saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons (45 g) of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the flour and whisk for 30 seconds to blend thoroughly without coloring. Add the stock, cream, and grated tomato and bring to a boil, whisking constantly. Turn down the heat to medium and cook, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the parsley, then whisk in the remaining 2 teaspoons butter, 1/2 teaspoon at a time, whisking after each addition until melted. Season with salt and black pepper and remove from the heat.
- Spoon the sauce over the fish fillets and sprinkle evenly with the cheese. Broil until the sauce begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Serve immediately directly from the baking dish or transfer the fillets to individual plates with a generous serving of sauce.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!
Topics: French Cooking