Arun Kapil shares his recipe for the perfect hake dish, with hispi cabbage and whipped curd.

"I love to add spices to fish – and the whipped curd helps to balance this" – Arun Kapil

Yield: Serves:4


  • 4 fillets of hake, each 20mm thick, 300g/10.5oz to 350g/12/3oz each, cleaned and skin scored, three even cuts
  • 5g/4tsp fresh root turmeric
  • 30g/1oz fresh root ginger, both peeled
  • 2 green finger chillies
  • 2 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1 tablespoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoon mustard oil or rapeseed is fine
  • Juice of 1½ lemons and zest of ½
  • 1 Hispi cabbage, sliced into 4 wedges through the poles, root trimmed
  • 2 teaspoon cumin seeds whole
  • 200g/7oz cottage cheese
  • 1 fat finger chilli, deseeded, finely diced


  1. Turn your grill to medium hot
  2. Blitz the spices in a food processor with the salt, oil, juice of 1 lemon and 3 tbsp water. Coat the fillets in the spicy marinade, line a grill pan with foil, give it a rub of oil, place the fillets on skin side up, pop onto a medium rack of the grill and cook for 5 to 7 minutes until the fish is just done. Set aside
  3. Steam the cabbage wedges, having popped the cumin seeds in the simmering water, until just cooked. Set aside, keep warm.
  4. In a small bowl using a hand blender or in a small food processor, blitz the cottage cheese with the remaining lemon juice and zest of ½ of lemon to a smooth, whipped consistency, about 5 mins of blitzing. Set aside.
  5. To serve, place a cabbage wedge, a fillet of sea bass on a warmed plate, then a dollop of whipped curd to the side.

TIP: The hake can be substituted for cod