California Central Coast Recipes

Poached Sole with Basil Cream Tomato Sauce

If you live on the West Coast, our local answer to Dover Sole is the locally caught Sand-dabs. They are very delicate and very flavorful when gently poached in white wine and fresh tomatoes. And so delicious! Serve this with a crusty bread, a nice salad and a glass of wine and you'll be in bliss!

Poaching in the oven is practically fool-proof, but the idea is to just carefully poach -not boil the fish! During the poaching process in the oven you should see just a very gentle bubbling along the edge of the pan. ©2018, Poached Sole with Basil Cream Tomato Sauce
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
re-calculate ingredients for:


1-1/2 pounds Sand dab or Dover Sole fillets (16)
16 Basil Leaves
1 pound Roma Tomatoes seeded and chopped
4 cloves Garlic sliced
1 Tablespoons butter
1 c Dry White Wine
1/4 teaspoons Cayenne Pepper (optional)
Salt and Pepper to taste.
1/4 cup Heavy Cream
1/2 cup Italian Parsley chopped
9x11 inch stove top safe baking dish

Preparation Directions.

1 Preheat the oven to 350F.

2 Butter the bottom of a 9x11 inch baking dish and one side of a 9x11 inch piece of parchment paper (for a cover during poaching).

3 Lightly score the milky side of each fillets. Lightly salt and pepper the fillets. Place a basil leaf in the center of each fillet and fold the fillet in half over the basil leaf.

4 Place the sliced garlic on the bottom of the buttered baking dish. Place the chopped tomatoes on top of the garlic, then neatly arrange the folded fillets in a single layer on top of the tomatoes. Pour the wine over the fillets, just enough to cover.

5 Place the baking dish on the stove over medium heat, and gently bring the poaching just to a boil. Cover the dish with the buttered parchment sheet on top and place the poaching dish into the preheated oven.

6 Poach for 10 to 15 minutes until the fillets are cooked, but still firm. Remove the baking disk from the oven. Carefully remove the fillets from the top of dish, place on a warm serving dish and cover.

7 If your pan is stove top safe --otherwise place the tomato wine mixture in a saute pan and reduce the remaining tomatoes and wine by a 1/3. Add the cream and continue cooking until the sauce is thickened. Remove from heat.

8 Stir in the chopped parsley and add the the cayenne pepper (if using) and correct the seasoning. Pour the sauce over the fillets and serve immediately along with a loaf crusty bread.

Wine and Food Pairing and Serving Suggestions.

This is a very mild and delicate fish dish. Serve with a chilled dry white wine like a Sauvignon blanc.

A tip from Sue!

The difference between white, black and red pepper

Do you know the difference between white, black and red pepper?

White pepper gives you an "immediate hot." Black pepper develops more slowly as you chew, while red pepper has a delayed kick or hotness.