Heston Blumenthal's Poached Sea Bream with Kombu Broth

Heston Blumenthal's Poached Sea Bream with Kombu Broth Kombu Kelp Seaweed Flakes 50g Pouch - add to basket

Experience a real umami hit with this Kombu kelp-infused dish.

Serves 6
Time 1 hour 10 mins prep (including soaking time), 15 mins cooking

This recipe was taken from Blumenthal's column in The Guardian and is a perfect demonstration of the transformative powers of umami. The seaweed broth, or dashi, brings a dense, meaty flavour to what on the surface you'd expect to be a very fishy-tasting dish.


  • 2 tsp Kombu or 2 Kombu Kelp Strips
  • 6 fillets sea bream, skin on
  • 2 large turnips, peeled and cut into 1cm pieces
  • 2 medium leeks, washed, green removed and discarded, the white cut across into 1cm slices
  • 1 lime, cut into 10 slices
  • 5g fresh ginger, peeled and cut into very fine shreds
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • Salt and pepper to season


  1. In a pan that is large enough to hold the fish fillets in a single layer, pour 400ml of boiling water over the Kombu seaweed and leave to infuse for an hour.
  2. After the 60 minutes are up, gently reheat the resultant broth and, when simmering, add the turnips.
  3. Simmer for 2-3 minutes, then add the leeks.
  4. A couple of minutes later, add the ginger and the soy sauce.
  5. Continue simmering for two minutes longer, then add the lime, and sesame seeds, and simmer for a few minutes more.
  6. Remove the pan from the heat.
  7. Season the fish and place the fillets in the liquid, making sure that they are submerged. The fish will be cooked after about 10 minutes in the hot broth. Serve immediately.


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