2 whole eggs
10 asparagus stalks
¼ white onion, diced
10 caperberries, halved
2 teaspoons horseradish sauce
2 teaspoons mustard
12 flat-leafed parsley leaves, torn
12 tarragon leaves (optional)
½ cup mayonnaise
250g skinless white fish (I used monkfish)
3 tablespoons plain flour
3 tablespoons milk
1 cup dried breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons neutral oil
1 teaspoon butter
lemon wedges, to serve
buttered white bread, to serve

This is a variation of tartare sauce that leans into the simplicity of asparagus. As a chef, people believe I’m all about fancier food. Truth be told, I do enjoy pub meals and this is my interpretation of one.


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1.Bring a small pot of water to a simmer, carefully submerge one of the eggs, and cook for 9 minutes.
2.Remove from the heat and refresh under cold water to cool. Peel and chop roughly.
3.Trim any fibrous ends from the asparagus and gently peel the spears, leaving the tips intact.
4.Slice the asparagus on an angle into 3cm lengths and put into a bowl.
5.Add the onion, caperberries, horseradish, mustard, herbs, mayonnaise and hard-boiled egg to the bowl. Mix well.
6.Cut the monkfish into two 125g portions and slice lengthwise about 80% of the way through to butterfly the portions open.
7.Place each butterfly between two sheets of baking paper and gently pound out into schnitzels no thicker than ½cm. Dust both sides of the schnitzels with the flour.
8.Beat the remaining egg with the milk and thoroughly coat each portion before dredging through the dried breadcrumbs.
9.Heat the oil in a large pan over a moderate heat until hot.
10.Add the butter, wait for it to foam, then fry the schnitzels for 3 minutes on each side until golden brown.
11.Serve the schnitzels with a lemon wedge and sprinkled with sea salt, and spoon the asparagus tartare across each portion.
12.Serve with fresh buttered white bread.

Food styling, recipes & photography David Neville