01 August 2009

A Fish Feast

I simply love fish! I bought a lovely whole sea bass today which I cooked in the oven, in a parcel of aluminium foil on a bed of vegetables. This is by far my favourite method for cooking whole fish, it's almost fool-proof, yields amazing results and is ever so easy to handle: amongst family, I serve the fish on its tray or a platter still in the foil, and fillet it at the table, leaving skin and bones in the foil parcel. Also, I usually only serve half of the fish to begin with (in the vain hope for left-overs), close the parcel again and the rest keeps nicely warm.

This is what I did: First, I covered a baking tray with two large sheets of aluminiuim foil, large enough to envelop the fish. My sea bass had the following bed-fellows: two carrots (chopped), three spring onions (chopped), some fresh spinach, a few twigs of rosemary, two tomatoes (sliced), four prawns (cooked - a gift from the fishmonger, so in they went, too), a hand full of black olives, salt and pepper, and a sprinkle of olive oil. I cleaned the fish, stuffed a few slices of lemon inside, placed it on the vegetables, sprinkled a little sherry on top and closed the foil parcel. I gave it half an hour at 190 C and the fish was cooked to perfection. Obviously, cooking times will vary depending on the size of your fish but I would start with about 20 minutes for a smaller specimen. You can always take the fish out, open your parcel and check whether it is cooked through, so this is a great cooking method to learn from and by. I served this with the aforementioned vegetables, a tomato salad and some crusty baguette. Simplicity itself. My only regret is that I do not have much in the way of left-overs, as we were unexpectedly joined by the youngest fish aficionado of the family... however, there is a little left for a fish pie tomorrow, I think. I'll keep you posted.

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