This delicious dish of monkfish is wrapped in salty pancetta. You can easily replace the monkfish for a cheaper (white) fish.

Monkfish wrapped in pancetta |

Monk fish with pancetta and creamy lemon mayo

What I try to do each week is to plan our meals a bit so that we at least have some decent food. The reality is that our lives are quite hectic so it is sometimes just not feasible to prepare a good meal and still do all the things we want. In my line of work it is sometimes necessary to work evenings, weekends or other hours, while Tom loves to go fishing with friends. Fishing is apparently essential to do as early as possible in the evening (after he comes home from work, which has fairly normal working hours)

So if you look at a typical evening such as we had yesterday, that means that he comes home around 6 pm and this particular case I had to leave at 6.30 since I had a family photoshoot in the studio at 7.30. Leaves precious little time for a normal meal!


I had set my mind to make a recipe of Jamie Oliver’s book “Cook” which involved pancetta, asparagus and monk fish. Tom had promised to be home early, so I figured I could still make the dish… Taking a photo of it would be nice, but if I could find the time… was doubtful.

I bought the fish in the afternoon which was incredibly expensive by the way (18 euro’s for about 500 gr. of monk fish-fillet. It still had to be made into a fillet which meant I had to pay for the entire fish and not just the fillet)

The recipe calls for pancetta, which of course I could not find anywhere around here, so had to do with regular smoked bacon.

Monkfish wrapped in pancetta |

All in all Tom was still quite late or at least later then he said the day before so it was a bit hurried but at least we still had a lovely meal. I did take three photos in a hurry so the styling is not exactly how I had wanted it but still half decent…:) The recipe is definitely worth a try and you can choose cheaper fish such as haddock, whiting or hake, which funnily enough my fish market didn’t have yesterday.

I also love these alaskan style fish and chips.

Can I use other fish for this recipe?

Yes you can. Any firm white fish will work here. Think of haddock, cod, whiting or hake to replace the monkfish.

Can I use other vegetables?

Sure you can. The green asparagus worked really well but you can definitely use white asparagus or another kind of vegetable. Roasted veggies will be nice here too.

Can I use mayonnaise from a jar?

Yes you can. I like to use Hellmann mayo as that is not too sweet. But use whichever you prefer.

Monkfish in pancetta |

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4 from 4 votes

Monkfish wrapped in pancetta by Jamie Oliver

Delicious piece of monkfish wrapped in pancetta
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 people


  • 4 fish fillets 2,5 cm thick each around 200 gr each. without skin and bones. I used monk fish
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary only the leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 lemons zest
  • black pepper
  • 16 slices pancetta or bacon
  • 4 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 kg green asparagus


  • Preheat the oven to 200 degrees ˚C. Sprinkle your fish fillets with the lemon zest (make sure not to grate the white part), rosemary and fresh pepper. No salt is needed because they are going to be wrapped in delicious salty pancetta. Put the slices of pancetta on a chopping board and flatten them extra with the side of knife. Put four slices together on the board, put a fish fillet on top and roll the package until it is wrapped around the fish.
  • Heat a large, ovenproof frying pan, put a little oil in and add the pieces of fish with the good side up. Fry them for about a minute and after that put the pan in the oven, for about 10-12 minutes depending on the thickness of the filet, until the pancetta is crispy and nice golden brown.
  • While the fish is in the oven you have time to make the lemon mayonnaise with either fresh mayonnaise or mayonnaise from a jar. Add enough lemon juice as the intention is for the mayonnaise to be a little bit too sour. In combination with the fish and asparagus that will be less. It’s ok if the mayonaise is a little thinner then usual.
  • Cook or steam the asparagus and serve them with the fish and the lemon mayonnaise.


Recipe from Jamie Oliver’s book Cook
Course: Main
Cuisine: English
Keyword: Monkfish, pancetta
Diet: Low carb, Paleo
Author: Jamie Oliver

Nutrition Information

Calories: 586kcal, Carbohydrates: 16g, Protein: 53g, Fat: 37g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 11g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 143mg, Sodium: 570mg, Potassium: 1298mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 1933IU, Vitamin C: 43mg, Calcium: 98mg, Iron: 7mg


The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.

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