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Mary Berry’s Sea Bream with Samphire and Chive Cream Sauce

Mary Berry's quick and easy recipe for sea bream and samphire in chive sauce is easy enough to make midweek but feels luxurious enough for the weekend.

From the book


A simple fish recipe that makes the most of delicious seabream. It is a quick recipe for a special supper. Sea bass and sea bream are often compared, but they are quite different. Sea bass is a delicate white fish, while sea bream has a more meaty, dense, flaky texture. Both are delicious and would work well here. Samphire is naturally salty, so go easy on the seasoning. Spinach or asparagus would work well if you can’t get samphire.

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4 sea bream fillets, skin on
2 tbsp sunflower oil
Knob of butter
300g (10½oz) samphire
½ lemon, cut into wedges, to serve
For the chive cream sauce:
200ml (⅓ pint) pouring double cream
2 tsp Dijon mustard
juice of ½ lemon
2 tbsp freshly chopped chives


To make the chive cream sauce, measure the cream and mustard into a small saucepan. Bring up to the boil, then add the lemon juice and chives, and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Set aside.

Pat the sea bream fillets with kitchen paper to remove excess moisture, then season on both sides.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the butter and, when foaming, add the fillets, skin-side down. Push down firmly and fry for about 3 minutes, until the skin is crispy and the fish is nearly cooked. Turn the fillets, reduce the heat and cook for 1–2 minutes, until just cooked through.

Meanwhile, cook the samphire in boiling water for 3 minutes until just tender. Drain.

Warm the sauce through, and spoon some on to four warm plates. Place a fillet on top and the samphire on the side. Serve with lemon wedges and the remaining sauce alongside.

Mary’s Tips: Best made and served. The sauce can be made up to 2 days ahead. Not suitable for freezing.


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