Wykehamist Halibut Steaks with Green Peppercorns

This luxurious mixture of halibut, green peppercorns, tomatoes, cream and brandy is an unusual dinner party dish. Serve with croquette potatoes, steamed broccoli or courgettes and, to drink, a well-chilled bottle of Pouilly Fume.

4 thick halibut steaks

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 large garlic clove, crushed K- oz. butter

4 medium-sized tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and finely chopped

4 tablespoons canned green peppercorns, drained

1 tablespoon prepared French mustard

2 fl. oz. sour cream

4 fl. oz. double cream

2 tablespoons brandy

Rub the fish steaks all over with the salt, lemon juice and garlic and set them aside on a plate.

In a frying-pan large enough to hold all the fish steaks in one layer, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the tomatoes, peppercorns and mustard and cook the mixture, stirring frequently, for 6 to 8 minutes or until it is thick.

Stir in the sour cream and place the fish in the pan. Spoon over the tomato mixture and reduce the heat to moderately low.

Cook the fish for 8 to 10 minutes on each side or until the flesh flakes easily when tested with a fork.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the fish from the pan and transfer it to a warmed serving dish. Keep hot while you finish the sauce.

Stir the cream and brandy into the sauce and cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat, pour the sauce over the fish and serve.