Baked lemon sole with lemon & caper paste

Small whole fish like lemon or Dover sole make perfect individual portions in this special seafood supper for two

  • Prep:15 mins
    Cook:10 mins
  • Serves 2
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 967
  • fat 93g
  • saturates 36g
  • carbs 2g
  • sugars 1g
  • fibre 2g
  • protein 30g
  • salt 4.9g


  • zest ½ lemon, peeled into strips using a vegetable peeler
  • 2 lemon thyme sprigs
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 2 lemon sole, about 300g/11oz each, dark skin removed, trimmed (see step-by-step)
  • 100g butter, diced
  • 100g capers
  • 25g Parmesan
  • 100ml extra virgin olive oil
  • finely grated zest 1 lemon


Get ahead

If you want to get ahead, you can make the caper paste two days in advance and keep it in the fridge. A few hours before cooking, the fish can be totally prepared on the tray, ready for the oven. Cover in cling film and keep in the fridge.

Fish bones

These whole fish will contain bones - if you'd rather they didn't, you can cook boneless fillets of chunky white fish like cod or pollock in exactly the same way, to roughly the same timings.



  1. First, make the caper paste. Blend the ingredients in a blender or small food processor for 2 mins until you have a smooth-ish purée (if using a food processor, you might need to scrape down the sides once or twice with a spatula). Transfer to a small bowl, cover with cling film and place in the fridge until needed. Can be made 2 days ahead and chilled.

  2. Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Scatter the lemon zest, lemon thyme and shallots onto a baking tray or ovenproof dish. Sprinkle the fish lightly with salt and put it on top of the shallots, skin-side up. Place pieces of butter on each fish and pour in 200ml water – this will steam the fish and keep it juicy.

  3. Put the fish and the prepared tray of potatoes (see recipe in Goes well with) in the oven at the same time and bake both for 10 mins, basting the fish halfway through. While the fish cooks, wilt the greens (see recipe in Goes well with) and take the caper paste out of the fridge to come to room temperature.

  4. Take the fish out of the oven and baste it one last time, then use a cook’s blowtorch to char the skin, if you like. Transfer the fish to a serving plate with some of the shallots and lemon zest. Spoon a little of the caper paste over the fish and serve immediately with the new potatoes and wilted spring greens.

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