1. Bring a salted saucepan of water to the boil. Top and tail the beans, and cook for about 5 minutes until just soft. Drain and set on an ice bath to cool (so that they keep their greenness).
2. Place a separate medium pan on a medium heat with the oil and butter. Add the finely diced shallot and sauté for about 4 minutes until soft but not browning. Add the crushed garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.
3. Add the peeled and 2cm cubed potatoes and coat with the oil and butter, stirring frequently for around 5 minutes, until shiny and glossy. Then add the chicken stock, bring to the boil and continue to simmer for around 10-12 minutes, until the potato is just cooked, but still holding its shape.
4. Put the contents of the pan with potatoes, together with the French beans, a teaspoon of Dijon mustard, the juice of a lemon, salt and pepper in a blender and blitz. For the smoothest of finishes, strain through a sieve. Taste again and re-season if required. The soup at this stage can be cooled over ice (to help maintain its colour), then simply reheated when needed.
5. If serving immediately, return to a gentle simmer.
6. While the soup is simmering, lightly dust the skinned sides of the cod fillets with flour and sprinkle with salt.
7. Heat a frying pan with oil, making sure it’s nice and hot before adding the fish, flour side down, to the pan. Cook for 4 minutes (do not be tempted to move the fish in this time!) until golden brown. Flip, add the butter, then cook for a further two, whilst spooning the butter over the top of the fillets.
8. Serve by spooning the soup into the bottom of a plate of wide rimmed bowl, then place the fish on the centre, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and spoon the remaining butter from the pan on top. Garnish with nasturtium and heritage tomato.
Sesame Cod with French Bean Soup & Nasturtium
500g French beans
3 echalion shallots
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
30g of butter
2 tbsp olive oil
500ml chicken stock
1 tsp Dijon Mustard
Juice of 1 lemon
For the fish:
4 tsp toasted sesame seeds
4 x 100g fillets of cod, skinned
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
Notes: You can easily substitute the cod for a different flaky, white fish e.g. haddock. You can skip the ice bath steps, your soup just won't be as green.