MasterChef EveryDay: John Torode's pan-fried sea bass and prawns

John Torode’s simplified take on sizzling sea bass and prawns on a base of saffron-infused lentils will impress even the most dedicated foodies
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Pan-fried sea bass and prawns
The freshness of the fish and prawns against the earthiness of the lentils is an absolute delight to the palate
This delicious fish starter would also make an impressive main meal - just choose larger fillets of sea bass or opt for two per serving. To finish this off like a true professional chef, drizzle with the tangy dressing below.

Preparation time: 25-30 minutes
Cooking time: 6-8 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients: pan-fried sea bass and prawns

* 100g raw, peeled tiger prawns
* 3 tbsp olive oil
* Finely grated zest of half a lime
* 1 garlic clove, crushed
* 4 small sea bass fillets, skin on and any bones removed

Ingredients: braised lentils

* 75g puy lentils
* 200ml fish stock
* small pinch of saffron
* 1 bay leaf, torn
* Half a shallot, finely chopped


Start with preparing the braised lentils. When they've been simmering for about five minutes, it will be time to start cooking the sea bass and the prawns.

1. Place the lentils, stock, saffron, bay leaf, and chopped shallot in a saucepan and bring to the boil.

2. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 15–20 minutes or until just tender, checking every now and then to make sure you don’t need to add any extra stock towards the end of cooking.

3. Meanwhile, pat dry the prawns and mix together in a bowl with 2 tablespoons of oil, the lime zest, and the garlic.

4. Preheat a frying pan, then add the prawn mixture and pan fry for 1–2 minutes on each side or until pink and lightly golden and cooked through. Remove from the pan and keep warm.

MasterChef EveryDay
5. Next, pat dry the sea bass fillets, add the remaining olive oil to the pan, and fry the sea bass fillets for 3–4 minutes. Turn and cook for the same amount of time on the other side. When the fish has a very crisp and golden skin and is cooked through, remove from the pan. If you need to cook the fish in batches, keep warm while you fry the second batch.

6. Serve the cooked sea bass on the braised lentils and prawns. If time, drizzle with the dressing below.

Add extra wow factor: finish off this dish with a delightful tangy dressing:

* 1 tbsp olive oil
* 1 tsp lemon juice
* 1 tsp white wine vinegar
* 1 tsp clear honey
* Quarter tsp Dijon mustard
* 1 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
* 1 tsp small capers, roughly chopped
* salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Combine the dressing ingredients in a screwtop jar, shake until well mixed. Drizzle over the fish and lentils.

Recipe from MasterChef EveryDay, DK, £20,

More recipes from MasterChef EveryDay

* Justin Ryan's pea and mint soup with prosciutto
* Gregg Wallace's top-choc tart with a trio of toppings

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