Month: March 2015

Wild Garlic Crusted Cornish Hake

Hake Dish

INGREDIENTS (serves 4)


1 Fillet of Hake (We usually get around four large portions from one hake fillet)

Garlic Crust

70g Wild Garlic
180g Dried Breadcrumbs
80g Grated Parmesan
120g Soft Butter
5g Salt
1 Egg Yolk

Greek Style Mushrooms

500g Water
140g Cornish Rapeseed Oil
1 Lemon, juiced
10g Salt
5 Coriander Seeds
5 Peppercorns
1 Bay Leaf
1 Sprig Thyme
100g Chestnut Mushrooms
1 Punnet Shimeji Mushrooms (White or Brown)

Poached Beetroots

2 Purple Beetroot
2 Yellow Beetroot
50g Cornish Rapeseed Oil
100g Water
75g White Wine
15g Honey
1 Sprig Thyme
3 Peppercorns
1 Bay Leaf




Hake has a very soft flake, so needs to be treated with love and respect…

Take the whole fillet and weigh it. Then using a coarse rock salt, weigh 10% of the fillet weight. So, if your fillet weighs 1kg, you would need 100g of rock salt. If you don’t have rock salt, then use 7% table salt.

Evenly rub this salt into the fish, and leave for 10 minutes, then wash off under a tap for 10 minutes.

Dry between clean kitchen cloths (this will help to firm up the flesh of the fish, making it easier to cook). Portion out into four pieces.

Garlic Crust

In a food processor, blend the Wild Garlic, Breadcrumbs, Salt and Parmesan together until all it has become a smooth green colour, without lumps remaining.

Take out the mix into a bowl and slowly work in the butter and egg yolk. This should bind your crust into a nice paste.

Roll out to ½ cm thick between greaseproof paper and set in the freezer. It can last for up to 1 month in the freezer, so can be made well in advance.

Once the crust has completely solidified, cutting through the paper, cut to the size of your hake portions.

Greek-style Mushrooms

Cut the mushrooms from the stalks, and quarter the chestnut mushrooms.

Fry the chestnuts until a nice golden colour, and then add the shimeji mushrooms.

Tie all the herbs and spices into a small muslin cloth, forming a bouquet garni.

Add the muslin bag, water, oil, salt and juice to the mushrooms.

Place a layer of paper down on the surface, with a small hole cut out of the middle. (This will help let any steam out as the mixture simmers).

Bring to the boil rapidly, and then remove from the heat immediately, and allow to cool in the fridge.

Poached Beetroot

Place the oil, water, wine, honey, peppercorns, thyme and bay into a pan and bring to the boil. Set this aside to infuse.

Wash the beetroot, using a scrubbing brush. At The Idle Rocks we leave all the skins on our beets as they contain a lot of the nutritional content.

Slice the beetroots nice and thinly using a mandolin to keep them even. Keep the different coloured beetroot slices separately and place into two pans.

Pouring the infused cooking liquid through a sieve, divide evenly between the two pans.

Add a pinch of salt to each and over a low heat, cook until tender and a knife goes through easily. Set these aside.

Assembly of the dish

To assemble the dish, you will need to pan fry the fish, skin side down, until the skin in nice and crispy, and the edges have turned golden.

Remove the frying pan from the heat and turn over the fish. Place the wild garlic crust on top of the fish skin and place under the grill for 1 minute, then allow to rest for 2 minutes out of the pan.

Warm the beetroots through separately, then drain away the liquor.

Taking a few spoons of the mushrooms, warm in a pan, making sure you have a nice even amount of the juice. This will form the sauce for the dish.

When plating, fan the beetroot out over the base of the plate, then place the fish and crust on top, with the mushrooms presented around, saucing the fish with the mushroom liquor.

Spring is Declared in Cornwall

Magnolia square

Last Tuesday, 3rd March, saw the official start of Spring declared in Cornwall. Each year here in The Duchy, Spring is celebrated following the arrival of at least fifty beautiful, bright blooms on the Magnolia trees in seven of our famous gardens; The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Caerhays Castle Gardens, Trebah Garden, Tregothnan, Trewidden, Trewithen and Trengwainton.

We love the combination of pink blooms against the bright blue sky. In fact we decided the best way to celebrate was with a glass of Whispering Angel Rose on our Terrace. Not only does this wine look pretty set against the fabulous blue sky, but tastes deliciously refreshing. With subtle juicy strawberry and raspberry fruit and a lovely elegant mineral finish it’s just perfect for sipping in the Sun.






World Book Day 2015- Celebrating Rosamunde Pilcher’s “The Shell Seekers”

The-Shell-Seekers-by-Rosamunde-Pilcher2013-10-14 14.45.34

As it’s World Book Day today we thought we’d share a quote from one of our favourite books by celebrated Cornish author Rosamunde Pilcher. “The Shell Seekers” (“Die Muschelsucher” for our German Friends) tells the story of Penelope Keeling and the relationships she shares with each of her three children through various stages of their lives.

As with many of Pilcher’s books the novel features beautifully vivid scenes of Cornwall. We love this quote because it paints such a perfect picture of a day out to St Mawes, including drinks on our iconic terrace…

“One morning, feeling energetic they took the Bentley and drove the short distance to St. Mawes, to wander around the village, inspect the sailing boats and end up having a drink on the terrace of The Idle Rocks Hotel.

It was a day of cloud and sunshine, the sun blinking in and out, the soft, sweet air spiced by the freshness of the salt breeze.”

The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher.





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