Sole is lightly seasoned with olive oil, salt and pepper and baked in the oven then served on a bed of sautéed spinach alongside a luscious ale sauce flavored with onions and butter in this simple healthy dinner recipe that will turn an ordinary evening into an elegant and unforgettable dinner. Make sure you particularly use ale, which is a type of beer that is not too bitter, for use in fish recipes. Ale has a sweet, fruity and full-bodied taste that makes it an ideal sauce for sole fish. Its bitterness has an herbal tinge from the hops that perfectly balances the sweetness of the malt.
Sole is a group of flatfish and includes different varieties like Dover sole, flathead sole, petrale sole, and grey sole. You can use any type of sole for use in cooking recipes, but the most commonly available is the Dover sole. Buy fresh Dover sole that smells from of the sea with eyes that are bright and shining. The inside of the gills should be bright pink red and not a blue-purple color. If you are using frozen fish, allow it to thaw in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.
Ingredients: 1 pint ale, 4 onions (2 diced, 2 sliced), 1.76 lbs. spinach, 1.76 lbs. sole, all-purpose flour, olive oil, vegetable oil (for frying), butter
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Dredge the sliced onions in some flour and fry. Pour the ale into a large skillet and place over medium heat. Add the diced onions and bring to a gentle simmer until reduced. Add 1 or 2 tablespoons of butter. Stir and heat until butter is melted. Remove the minced onions from the beer. Brush the fish with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Lay the fish in a roasting pan and drizzle some more olive oil onto the bottom of the pan. Bake about 12 to 15 minutes per inch of thickness; for fillets, bake 10 minutes per inch. Use an instrument to read the temperature, thermometer should read 135 to 140 degrees F. when the fish is done. Melt a few tablespoons of butter in a saucepan over medium high heat. Add the spinach and sauté for 1 minute. Remove immediately. Serve the fish on top of the spinach and alongside the ale sauce.
You can bake the sole whole or bake sole fillets, but the cooking time will vary. A whole sole can range in size from one to five pounds while the sole fillets are very thin and cook quite quickly, in about five minutes in a 350 degrees F oven. You know that the sole is done it the thick end of the fish flakes easily with a fork. Prized for its sweet flavor and tender texture, sole fish should be cooked just right and not be overcooked or they will dry out easily and lose their delicate flavor. Baking is the best way to bring out the natural flavor and the best qualities of the fish.