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Lemon Sole (Microstomus kitt)

This fish, which is commonly found around the coasts of the British Isles, should on no account be mistaken for Dover Sole. Unfortunately unscrupulous restaurants often use the word sole as a generalisation, when they really mean Lemon Sole.

Although this is a good fish, it isn't a sole at all - but a member of the Pleuronectidae family. Its shape is wider and less elongated than the true Sole, and the colouring of its dark-side a dull brown rather than grey, and it's left rather than right handed (all true soles are the latter).

Culinary speaking the flesh of the Lemon sole is softer, without the "meat-like" texture of a true sole.

As already mentioned, it is nonetheless a good flatfish, particularly when very fresh, and it can be treated in the same way as its namesake, and will cost you half as much. Larger specimens are ideal for filleting, but keep the bones, as they make good stock.

It is known in the West Country as Torbay Sole (after Torbay, in Devon) and is commonly found in France where it is known as Sole Limande. It is not the same fish as the American Flounder - which is sometimes also known there as Lemon Sole. See also "Sole", "Flounder, Winter (Platichthys Flesus)" and "Flounder; Witch/Witch Sole (Glyptocephalus cynoglossus)"

If you enjoy cooking take a minute to look at ‘Simon Scrutton French Cookery Classes’ on Google – and learn how to make top class bistro-style dishes. Classes take place in the beautiful Charente region of France & can be combined with a holiday, they are suitable for beginners upwards. Especially for those hoping to open their own restaurant. Small classes.

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