What’s cooking today: Fried kingklip with caper butter sauce

What’s cooking today: Fried kingklip with caper butter sauce
Tony Jackman’s fried kingklip with caper butter sauce. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

Capers, butter, kingklip. That’s a ménage à trois worth plating up for a classy supper. A few chips on the side won’t harm.

My lifelong favourite fish, kingklip, flakes beautifully and, if cooked with care to be slightly underdone, can be a minor masterpiece of good eating. Kingklip well deserves being treated with respect, and a caper butter sauce is a splendid match for it.

(Serves 2)


2 handsome kingklip portions from the middle of the fish

3 Tbsp butter

1 Tbsp olive oil

For the caper butter sauce:

3 Tbsp butter

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

2 Tbsp capers

Juice of 1 lemon

salt and ground black pepper to taste 

1 teaspoon thyme leaves


Make the sauce first.

Melt ½ teaspoon butter in a frying pan on a moderately high heat. When it foams, add the capers and sauté, stirring, until the capers crisp; just a couple of minutes. Add the lemon juice, thyme and garlic and cook on a low heat for 2 minutes, being watchful. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat while you cook the fish.

Fry the kingklip in butter and a splash of olive oil, turning once, until cooked but slightly underdone in the middle. Any more than this and the fish risks becoming too dry. Serve with the sauce spooned on top. DM

Tony Jackman is Galliova Food Writer 2023, jointly with TGIFood columnist Anna Trapido.

Follow Tony Jackman on Instagram @tony_jackman_cooks.

This dish is photographed plate by Mervyn Gers Ceramics.


Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Clyde Smith says:

    A pedant adds his R0.02 worth: So you start off the sauce with a half teaspoon of butter (this seems very little for a caper sauté?). When does the balance of the 3Tbspns get added? This is not just pedantic – I would like to get the sauce just right. Perhaps you start off with the 3 tablespoons?

  • Theo Butler says:

    Agree with previous comment. The fish requires 3 tbsp of butter and 1 tbsp of olive oil; the sauce requires 3 tbsp of butter. What happens to the remainder of the tablespoons of butter for the sauce? Does a splash of olive oil for the fish convert to a tablespoon? Editor were you eating or sleeping?

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