Serves 4

A member of the cod family, hake has long taken a back seat to the more popular cod. But, because so much pressure has been put on other New England fish species, alternatives like hake are becoming popular. This is a simple preparation, but because the butter and lemon enrich the sauce, it’s satisfying during the cold, winter months. 

  • 1/4 cup canola oil 
  • 4 (7-ounce) hake fillets, skin removed 
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice 
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves 
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper 

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

In a large, oven-safe saute pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Place the hake in the hot oil, presentation side down. Cook for 2 minutes, then lower the heat. Add the butter to the pan and let it brown around the fish for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and carefully flip the fish over. Transfer the saute pan to the oven and bake for 5 minutes.

Remove the fish fillets to a serving platter. Brush the fillets with the lemon juice and garnish with thyme leaves. Season with salt and white pepper. 

From The New England Kitchen by Jeremy Sewall and Erin Byers Murray, Rizzoli 2014.