Monkfish has a splendid meaty, firm texture and the flesh is a lovely pure white. Overall the whole fish has an extraordinary appearance, a wide flattened head, fierce looking teeth and much narrower body that tapers to the tail fins. In fact once the head is removed all the remaining  part is known as the tail. The tail part contains a single cartilaginous bone that can be easily removed for you in the shop. Try this Monkfish recipe that combines its robust and firm flavours with a wrap of Parma Ham.

The quantities here will serve two people but scale easily for more. Allow about 40 minutes for preparation and cooking time.

Monkfish Recipe With Parma Ham Ingredients

650g  Monkfish tail (cut lengthwise into 2 fillets) from Walter Purkis and Sons
70g  butter
6-8 slices Parma ham
1 lemon in quarters
Chopped chives
Chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp grated lemon zest
Salt and freshly ground Pepper for seasoning

Monkfish Recipe Cooking Method

Preheat your oven to 180°C which is gas mark 4

Take your fillets and trim off any remaining grey membrane that shows on the outside of the Monkfish tail. For easy handling dry the fish with a cloth or kitchen towel

Mix together the butter, herbs and zest. (Fresh thyme also works very well in this dish) Use most of this butter mixture to sandwich together the two pieces of fish. Season with a little salt (The ham will add salt too) and some freshly ground black pepper.

On your work surface place your Parma Ham in a row with each piece overlapping the next by about 1-2cm 
Place the two Monkfish fillets on top of the ham hold them firmly together and roll up in the ham slices. This sausage may come apart or unroll while cooking so to hold the fish and ham together use some string, tied round every 3 or 4 cm. Rub the outside of your finished parcel with more of the butter. If you are not cooking right away place in the fridge but do allow time for it to warm back up prior to cooking.

To roast place the fish in a suitable sized roasting tray. Squeeze the juice of half lemon over the fish. Bake for 20 minutes.

When cooked cut the cooked Monkfish parcel across at an angle into thick slices. Serve with the pan juices and remaining lemon quarters. Some wilted spinach or green beans would be good with this as would some small roasted potatoes or crushed new potatoes.

If you are looking for more monkfish cooking tips or recipe inspiration check here >>