John Dory on a Pumpkin Velouté, with Roasted Pumpkin, Apple and Wild Mushrooms

John Dory on Pumpkin VelouteServes: 2

Preparation: 45mins approx.

Cooking: 45mins approx.

John Dory is one of our favourite fish. It can cope with more robust flavours such as in this seasonal and wonderfully tasty little number.
This might look complex, but it is easy really. Cooking the fish perfectly is the most important factor. All the garnish elements can be made a bit in advance and then kept warm which means you can focus on cooking.



  • 700 – 900g John Dory (gross weight)
  • 1k Pumpkin or squash
  • 1 bunch of sage
  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 1 Granny Smith Apple
  • 140g of wild mushrooms (chestnut will do)
  • Salt and pepper
  • Extra Virgin Oil for roasting

Allergens: For those of you with allergies please remove or substitute accordingly.


  1. Ask your Fishmonger to trim the fish into neat shapes,
    Prior to cooking season the fish and return to the fridge.
  2. Make the pumpkin velouté.
    Finely chop some of the fresh sage you will need about 2 Tablespoons and put aside for later.
    Peel and deseed the pumpkin or squash, reserving about 200g which should be cut into wedges for roasting.
    Dice the pumpkin and put it in a saucepan, together with the chopped sage and  unsalted butter.
    Cook over a low heat, stirring frequently.
    Continue cooking and stirring until the pumpkin is soft and breaking down, this will take about 15 minutes.
    Now add the chicken stock to the pumpkin (use bought stock rather than cubes as these will be too strong in flavour), continue cooking at a simmer for a further 10 minutes.
  3. While the pumpkin and chicken stock is simmering turn your oven on to (200C/180C Fan/Gas 6)
  4. Pour the contents of the saucepan into a blender and blend until silky smooth (the texture should be like that of a thick soup).
    Pour the Velouté through a sieve and season, and keep warm just on the edge of the heat.
  5. Peel and core the granny smith apple and cut into wedges.
    Place the apple and pumpkin wedges onto a baking tray, season, sprinkle with virgin olive oil.  Roast for about 15 minutes until soft and just brown, turning once.  Turn the oven off and leave them to keep warm in the residual heat.
  6. Slice the wild mushrooms in half, leaving any small ones whole, (we used girolles and pied bleu for this recipe) chestnut will also be fine.
    Melt a knob of butter in a small pan and sauté the mushrooms for 2 – 3 minutes.  Cover the pan, to stop the mushrooms drying out, and put the pan into the oven to keep warm in the residual heat.
  7. Place frying pan on the hob on High and add a good layer of olive oil.  When the oil is hot enough (test by dropping a small piece of sage into the oil – it should sizzle immediately).  Fry the sage leaves for both garnish and flavour, until crispy.  Drain and set these aside on absorbent paper.
  8. Keep all the elements warm and have them ready for serving.
  9. Heat a non-stick frying pan to a medium heat.
    Add the John Dory fillets, skin side down and cook for about 3 – 4 minutes.
    Don’t forget to press down on each fillet, at the start of cooking, to stop them curling too much.
    Flip them over and cook for a further 30 seconds. Remove the pan from the heat, leaving the fish to finish cooking in the residual heat.

Plate up (see picture)
John Dory Plate up

  • Place two tablespoons of the puree in the centre of the plate.
  • Now add a few pieces of roasted pumpkin, apple, and mushrooms.
  • Sprinkle on the deep fried sage.
  • Place the cooked John Dory on top.
  • Roasted new potatoes in their skins make a good accompaniment for this dish.

You will have more pumpkin velouté than you need for two portions, but it is delicious served with pasta later in the week!



This recipe was created by Pete Thompson for Steve Hatt Fishmongers