How To Make

How To Make: Pollock En Papillote

8th February 2018

Interview: Killian Fox
Photographs: Yousef Eldin

Fish Shop is a work in progress. It started out as a street food operation, then graduated to a wooden shed in a south Dublin market, before finding a permanent home in Stoneybatter, on Dublin’s northside, in 2015. The offering may have evolved from fish & chips to seafood tasting menus – and they say it’s continuing to evolve – but the basic philosophy remain the same: dishing up delicious sustainable seafood with the minimum of fuss.

Owners Jumoke Akintola and Peter Hogan met in London – she hails from Hackney, he’s originally from Co Waterford. They worked as teachers before turning their hands to street food. “I wanted to do something else,” he said. “And I got roped in,” she laughs. Setting up shop in Blackrock market, fish and chips seemed like a good stepping stone from street to restaurant. Now, at their small, white-tiled space on Queen Street, they serve more refined dishes like roasted hake with cider and black kale – though you can still get fish & chips at their newer spot around the corner on Benburb Street.

The morning we stop by, Jumoke is firing up the mighty clay oven in the back garden at Queen Street, where most of the cooking gets done. On the table are fillets of pollock – “one of our favourite white fish,” says Jumoke, explaining that they don’t use cod for sustainability reasons. These will be cooked en papillote with cabbage and mussels from Roaringwater Bay in West Cork, though due to the heat of the wood-fired oven she’s wrapping the ingredients in tinfoil instead of baking parchment.

“Good Irish colours,” we remark when the fish and mussels emerge and Jumoke is garnishing the dish with mint and pea shoots. “Oh yeah,” she says, laughing at the green, white and orange on the plate. “I hadn’t thought of that.” Patriotic associations aside, this is a lovely, understated dish, the delicate flavour of the pollock combining beautifully with the meaty mussels and buttery stock.

Fish Shop is at 6 Queen Street, Dublin 7;

The second branch, selling fish and chips, is at 76 Benburb Street, Dublin 7

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Serves 2


Half a sweetheart cabbage, cut into thin horizontal strips
2 pollock fillets (thick centre pieces, skin on)
2 knobs of butter
10-12 mussels, cleaned
Salt and pepper
200-250ml fish stock

To finish:

A handful of mint leaves
Pea shoots (optional)
Lemon juice
Olive oil


If you’re making your own fish stock, sweat a chopped onion, some chopped fennel and a handful of chopped parsley stems until soft. Add fish bones and heads and sauté for a few minutes, then cover with warm water, bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes, skimming off any foam. Strain the stock, discarding the bones and veg, and simmer the liquid for a further 20 minutes.

Pre-heat your oven to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6 – or bring a wood-fired oven up to 270°C. Cut out four sheets of greaseproof or baking parchment, each roughly 40x37cm (16x15in) – two pieces will go together to make up each parcel. (If cooking in a wood-fired oven, use tinfoil, as the paper may burn at the higher heat.)

Place a handful of raw cabbage strips at the centre of each wrapping and lay the fillets on top, with a knob of butter on each fillet. Divide the mussels between the two wrappings, season with salt and pepper, and finally ladle on the stock, taking care that it doesn’t spill over the sides. Carefully pull the doubled baking parchment layers (or the foil) up and over the fish, folding the edges very carefully to seal them; don’t roll them up tightly as you want room for the steam to circulate. Seal each parcel by screwing the ends.

Put the parcels on a baking tray and cook for 12-15 minutes in a conventional oven, or 3-5 minutes in a wood-fired oven – you want the fish to reach 50°C. Meanwhile, mix a small amount of lemon juice with three times as much olive oil and drizzle this lightly over the mint leaves and pea shoots.

Unwrap the parcels at the table to serve. (If you’re using foil, carefully transfer the contents to heated plates. If there’s a lot of sauce, bubble it in a pan for a few minutes to reduce it a bit, then pour it over the fish.) To finish, scatter with the dressed mint and pea shoots and season to taste.

Posted 8th February 2018

In How To Make


Interview: Killian Fox
Photographs: Yousef Eldin

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